Rookie mini-camps opening up on Friday signaled the true dawning of a new era for the San Diego Chargers. New General Manager Tom Telesco has already put his imprint on an overhauled roster, and this milestone along with the upcoming OTAs would allow new Head Coach Mike McCoy to do the same. The praise for both is sure to come by the bucketful as the 2013 NFL season progresses.
It has certainly already started with Telesco who has been nearly universally lauded for his effort in April’s NFL Draft to retool this team. Many feel that the Bolts added not one, not two, but three first round caliber players in the rounds one, two, and three respectively. D.J. Fluker is a mauling right tackle who was largely considered the best run blocker in the entire draft class, Manti Te’o’s off-field concerns don’t detract from his on-field success, and Keenan Allen is a hard worker who just flat-out know how to get open. Finding three players with a consensus opinion that is that positive in one draft class will certainly garner some adoration.
As for McCoy, he was also impressed after the first day of mini-camp. He immediately named the first rounder Fluker as the standout according to the Chargers’ team website. According to McCoy: “D.J. Fluker did a heck of a job. When you see kids that come from Alabama, the way they’ve been coached, he really was the leader out there on offense today. It’s great to see that because we need more guys like that. Very vocal. Very positive to everybody. (He) broke the team down at the end, and I didn’t ask him to. I wanted to see who would step up, and he stepped up without hesitation.”
That certainly says a great deal about the drafting prowess of Telesco in its own right that the first round pick is giving quite a solid first on-field impression. McCoy’s comments according to BoltBeat also reinforced the drafting ability of Telesco as he said: “There are some talented kids out there. Not just the drafted players. We have a number of college free agents and then guys who are in here for a workout, and you really never know. We’re going to keep turning this roster before the opener. I’m not going to put a limit on it and say we’re only going to have a certain number of rookies on this football team. We’re going to take the best 53 we can.”
Finding gems of the undrafted variety is no anomaly for the Chargers who found players like Malcom Floyd and Antonio Gates in years past from the undrafted pool. Many feel signings like Kwame Geathers at nose tackle, Nick Becton at left tackle, and Marcus Cromartie and Kenny Okoro at cornerback could make the roster out of camp from this year’s crop. Clearly McCoy shares those sentiments after getting his first look at those players.
It’s finally an exciting time to be a Chargers fan again with an infusion of youth and some serious potential all across the roster. That along with the quality of both GM Telesco and HC McCoy make the prospects for this team seeing a seriously rebound in 2013 a definite possibility. Don’t be surprised if the praise continues to pile up for these two when success arrives during the upcoming season.