The San Diego Chargers went in search for another backup quarterback after eight year veteran Kyle Boller announced his retirement on July 28, 2012 a day after signing a one year deal. Kevin O’Connell signed a deal with the team yesterday and will fill in for injured backup Charlie Whitehurst who hurt his left knee last week. O’Connell was the 31st pick in round three of the 2008 NFL Draft by the New England Patriots. O’Connell was eventually released by New England, and spent the last three seasons with the New York Jets.
In his college career with the San Diego State Aztecs, O’Connell completed 58 percent of his passes for 7,689 yards, 46 touchdowns and 34 interceptions in 39 games. In his NFL career, O’Connell has only thrown six passes, but completed four of them for 23 yards, no touchdowns and no interceptions. O’Connell is 27 years old, so that is a big positive in terms of age for a backup, but he has not thrown a pass since the 2008 season.
If Whitehurst’s injury is serious, there was the possibility that San Diego could go after former Tennessee Titans and Chargers QB Billy Volek. Volek spent six seasons with the Chargers from 2006-2011. Volek turned down an offer from San Diego on Friday before they signed Boller. He was released by San Diego on March 16, 2012 which was the same day that the team signed Whitehurst to a two year deal. Volek may have turned down a contract from San Diego’s front office because they chose Whitehurst over him and now that the latter is hurt, they tried to re-sign the former.
Athletes and people in general can be overly sensitive at times, but I do not blame Volek for turning down San Diego’s offer to him. If the front office wanted Volek that bad, they would not have released him about four and a half months ago.