By Anthony Blake on March 29, 2014
The glitz and glamor of being a first-round pick in the NFL Draft are hard to ignore this day and age, but the fact is that there are still seven rounds of selections after the first 32 that mean just as much to every franchise. San Diego Chargers general manager Tom Telesco understands this idea, and he will do himself well to tab these five underrated prospects as members of the Bolts in the 2014 NFL Draft.
There have been a few stray mentions of Deone Bucannon among draft know-it-alls, but for the most part his name has been absent from the conversation. And that’s really funny considering the fact that he is the near consensus top strong safety in the entire draft class. It’s quite possible that the Bolts could land him in Round 2 which would be absolutely theft for a player of his ability.
A ridiculous Senior Bowl put Keith McGill on the radar and an impressive showing at the NFL Combine backed up that performance. Despite his outstanding pre-draft workout showings, McGill is still considered a late-second rounder at best. At 6-foot-3, 211-pounds with a 4.51 time in the 40-yard dash, Gill’s size and speed at corner for the Chargers would be a terrific addition in Round 3.
Small school kids always get overlooked, and Billy Turner could be the classic example of that this year. At 6-foot-5 315-pounds he has the prototypical build for an elite pass protector and a natural ability to mirror that is suited for being a left tackle at the next level. NFL bloodlines are also in his favor with a father and brother who played in the league. This kid would be a terrific developmental player behind King Dunlap at left tackle.
Depth at the interior offensive line spots is absent for the Bolts, and David Yankey could be a real value in Round 2. Some projections have him as a late first rounder, but guards tend to fall on draft day. The athleticism Yankey displays at 6-foot-6, 315-pounds is more like that of a wide receiver than an offensive guard. He would fit perfectly into San Diego’s zone-blocking scheme and provide an immediate starter in place of Jeromey Clary.
Size is undoubtedly the main knock on Lamarcus Joyner. He may only be 5-foot-8, 184-pounds, but you’d be hard-pressed to find a more physical defensive back in this entire draft class. Joyner has the leadership traits and clutch gene that GMs seek out in all 53 guys on the roster. He is going to be an absolute steal for some team possibly even as late as Round 3, and San Diego should be his new home.
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