San Diego should select a guard or a safety in the second round of the 2012 NFL Draft

By Kenny Gardner

The San Diego Chargers have the 17th pick in the second round of the 2012 NFL Draft, which is the 49th overall pick.  Four time Pro Bowl and two time All-Pro guard Kris Dielman announced his retirement in February of this year.  Dielman started six games at left guard during the 2011 season, while Tyronne Green started eight games at this position.  Louis Vasquez started 14 games at right guard last year, but Brandyn Dombrowski is a restricted free agent, and even if San Diego re-signs him, they would only have three guards.

According to, Amini Silatolu is ranked 44th among all prospects, is projected as a second round pick and third among guards.  Brandon Brooks is ranked 67th among prospects, and is projected as a second or third round pick, so he might be the most realistic option for San Diego.

San Diego also had problems at strong safety last year because Steve Gregory was rated as one of the worst safeties according to Pro Football Focus.  This is why the Chargers signed veteran Atari Bigby to a one year, $2.5 million contract.  Bigby will be 31 years old at the start of the 2012 season so he is not a long term solution.  Bigby missed 12 games in 2010 when he played for the Green Bay Packers, and only started two games, but was able to play in 15 for the Seattle Seahawks in 2011.  Harrison Smith is projected as a second round pick and is ranked 47th among all prospects, but second at his position, so he is unlikely to be available.  Brandon Taylor is projected as a third round pick, 92nd among prospects and third at the strong safety position.


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