The end of the 2013 season was off the charts for the San Diego Chargers, winning their last four regular season games to make the playoffs and then putting a scare in the Denver Broncos during the divisional round. While that must have made Chargers fans happy, there are some things that must be fixed about the team going into the 2014 season. The first order of business needs to be looking at the draft to get some help in the secondary.
San Diego was 29th in the NFL in passing yards allowed at nearly 259 yards a game. That must change especially with a quarterback like Peyton Manning in the division. Many mock drafts have the Chargers selecting a cornerback with their first round pick with names like Oklahoma State’s Justin Gilbert, TCU’s Jason Verrett and Florida’s Marcus Roberson being floated about. Those would all be great picks for the Chargers but do they go after a safety instead?
The names Calvin Pryor and Ha Ha Clinton-Dix could be thrown about as well but with Eric Weddle at the free safety position, it would be hard for the team to make a move like that. It likely boils down to the three cornerbacks mentioned before. Gilbert ran a 4.37 40 yard dash at the NFL Scouting Combine while Verrett ran a 4.38 and Roberson was much slower at 4.61 which makes the choice slightly easier if you wanted to go strictly on speed.
Gilbert is exactly six foot while Verrett is just 5-9. With the height of some of the receivers in the AFC West, finding a taller cornerback is probably the right way to approach this. Gilbert should be the choice at No. 25 to help fix the secondary in San Diego. He is just as tall as Roberson but has better speed and better jumping ability. The combine probably made a big difference on what the Chargers will do in the first round of the 2014 NFL Draft. There are still over two months to go until the draft and the team may go after a free agent cornerback but if they don’t, Gilbert’s name should be called late in the evening on May 8.