Monday, July 28, 2008

San Diego Chargers Training Camp

I was able to attend the afternoon practice for the San Diego Chargers today. This is the 3rd practice in full pads since the team started camp last week. Here are some observations from the live session:

-The team started the practice with "Oklahoma Drills". The defense dominated the offense and won each of the three competitions. The players were going crazy in support of the winning players. (Note: According to the Chargers and Jaguars are two of the only NFL teams that still run this tackling drill).

-WR Chris Chambers was catching everything. He ran crisp routes and made some tough catches. A few of QB Phillip Rivers passes were thrown behind the receiver but Chambers still got them. A full offseason with the team this year should help Chambers in this offense.

-LB Shawn Merriman loves to play to the crowd. He noticeably goes harder in drills to get a reaction from fans watching the play. He is also much bigger physically when seen in person (especially compared to the other backers).

-Rookie RB Jacob Hester (LSU) looked solid running the football. He was able to get around the corner and ran tough inside. Expect him to be a short yardage back and make some plays catching the ball out of the backfield.

-QB Phillip Rivers threw a good ball in individual drills, but was struggling in the team scrimmage. His passes fluttered and there were a few blown plays where he held the ball too long. Despite this, Rivers is still a very vocal player/leader on the field.

-The offensive line looks tough and very aggressive.

-CB Antonio Cromartie continues to make plays all over the field. He also worked a lot at the punt returner position during special teams drills.

-The tempo of the practice seemed kind of slow. The players looked tired and exhausted despite it being a rather cool afternoon weather wise.

Overall there is a lot of talent on this football team. I will be attending more practices in the future and will have more extensive evaluations on players and team progress.

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