The San Diego Chargers chose former South Carolina Gamecocks defensive end Melvin Ingram with the 18th pick in round one of last year’s NFL Draft. Ingram will more than likely miss the entire 2013 season with a torn ACL which occurred in practice on Tuesday.
This injury to Ingram continues a negative trend for former Chargers first-round picks. Shawne Merriman and Luis Castillo were San Diego’s first-round picks in 2005, and Castillo was injured throughout his career while Merriman missed 17 of San Diego’s 18 games in 2008 due to knee surgery.
Antonio Cromartie was a first-round pick in 2006, and he played the entire 2008 season with a broken hip. Buster Davis was San Diego’s first-round pick in 2007, and he missed 12 games in 2008 with a groin injury.
Larry English was San Diego’s first-round pick in 2009 and he has been injury prone as well. Ryan Mathews was San Diego’s first-round pick in 2010, and he missed four games as a rookie with injuries, two games in 2011 and four games last season due to breaking his collarbone.
Antoine Cason was one a few first-round picks from 2005-2012 who avoided missing time or playing with a major injury, playing in all 83 games from 2008-2012. Unfortunately for San Diego, Cason signed a contract with the Arizona Cardinals this year, which could hurt the Chargers at one of the cornerback spots.
Fortunately for San Diego, they chose former Illinois Fighting Illini defensive tackle Corey Liuget in round one of the 2011 NFL Draft, and he appears to be on his way to a breakout season. After recording one sack as a rookie in 2011, Liuget record seven sacks last season, which ranked second on the team.
San Diego continues to have misfortunes with their former first-round picks, but hopefully Ingram recovers from his torn ACL and returns as an impact player.