Just like with the draft busts, we should probably start with some ground rules.
- Players are only eligible from the 1994 NFL Draft or later. There are two reasons for this. First, that is when the draft shrunk from 12 rounds to 7 and became less of a crapshoot. Second, I only started watching football (and the Chargers) in 1998....and since I'm the one making the list, it's a good idea for me to be familiar with the names I'm looking at.
- The opposite of the bust list in terms of round/value. Later round picks will be ranked higher than similar players picked in higher rounds based off of a better value.
- We are mainly concerned with the player's contribution to the Chargers. Michael Turner, Trent Green, and players like that will be left out of this list because their main success came after leaving San Diego.
Onto number ten, and one of my favorite San Diego Chargers, CB Quentin Jammer. Jammer was drafted with the 5th pick in the 2002 NFL Draft, and at 6 feet tall and 200 lbs he was viewed as a "jam corner" (coincidental!) that would be very physical with opposing WRs without sacrificing any athleticism.
In his first season, Jammer came to Chargers training camp late after a long contract-dispute. This was not rare for first-round draft picks for the Bolts at the time. Due to his being late to report, Jammer only got to start in 4 games the entire season but saw time in 14 games total. Since then, Quentin has played 8 NFL seasons while missing only 1 game.
Think about that for a second. Name another player that isn't a QB that has missed one game, and I'm not entirely certain if he missed it for injury or not, over the last 9 seasons. You probably can't. I probably can't! For a physical CB to pull it off is something special.
In 130 starts with the Chargers, Jammer has picked off opposing QBs 18 times. He's defended 121 passes, forced 6 fumbles (recovering 5 of them) and collected 601 tackles. Outside of the pedestrian interception numbers, those figures are pretty ridiculous for a top-flight CB. As has always been the case with Jammer, he's a good pair of hands away from being possibly the best CB in football.
Quentin has worked with multiple Defensive Coordinators, Safeties behind him, CBs on the other side of the field and has come away looking nothing short of a consistent shutdown CB. On top of that, Jammer is a leader in the locker room, and is widely-known as one of the nicest and most charitable guys on the team if not in the entire NFL. For proof, just check out The Jammer Family Foundation website.
Quentin will be 32 years old by time the 2011 NFL season (hopefully) rolls around. Both him and Norv Turner believe he has about three more good years at CB before he'll make the eventual move over to a Safety position. With just one year left on his contract, Chargers fans are hoping that Quentin eventually makes that switch while still in San Diego.
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