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2012 NFL Draft - Scouting for Future Chargers: Bowl Games Part 13

Team Needs
Starter Starter Competition Depth Projects
Current starter is FA next year and has no surefire understudy Current starter is FA next year and has understudy or current starter is inexperienced One or more backups are FAs next year May need a new starter or backup after 2012 season

In case you missed it, I justified the most recent updates to the team needs list a few weeks ago when I scouted the last week of the college football regular season. There's a lot of unknowns until we know the extent of some injuries and any changes in management are made, so I'm not going to say much more about that. Instead let's go to the games.

Southern Methodist
(7-5) vs Pittsburgh (6-6) Saturday 1/7 10:00 AM PT (ESPN)
BBVA Compass Bowl (Birmingham, AL): Do you remember June Jones? If not, do you remember when Kevin Gilbride got fired as Chargers Head coach? Well, June Jones took over and was even considered as a full time replacement before accepting a job as Hawaii's Head Coach and the Chargers hired the recent Redskins castoff Marty Schottenheimer. June Jones moved his spread passing attack (a derivative of the old run and shoot that he and Gilbride were raised with) to the once storied (and once quite dirty) SMU. The Mustangs have had their issues as their QB was lost to injury midseason as was their top RB, which leaves them a bit understaffed as they take on a Pittsburgh team known recently for pass rushers and have a good one in Senior DE Brandon Lindsey. SMU also runs a 3-4 defense, which is always interesting for Chargers scouts. Pitt has sent a number of good offensive players to the NFL in recent years (Larry Fitzgerald, LeSean McCoy and Jon Baldwin ring a bell?) and over their history (Tony Dorsett, Dan Marino, Curtis Martin and Mike Ditka anyone?), but this team is a little light on that kind of graduating talent. RB Ray Graham was their best talent, but he's since been lost to injury. This depleted Panthers coaching staff (the head Todd Graham took his top coordinators and left for Arizona State) will have to get creative to entertain us in this one.

I'll go over the individual players after the jump.

BFTB Scouting Targets:
Player School Pos. Class Height Weight
Brandon Lindsey
Pittsburgh DE Sr. 6'2 253 lbs
An effective pass rusher with experience at OLB. He'd be a natural fit to move to 3-4 OLB in the NFL. Shows agility to drop into coverage. Last year ex-teammate Jabaal Sheard made the switch from DE to 3-4 OLB and was productive for the Browns. Shows a good array of pass rush moves. Speed to power, swim and rim, good hand usage to fight off blockers. Closing speed is only somewhat above average and second effort could be more consistent. (3rd round)
Luke Nix
Pittsburgh OG Sr. 6'5 303 lbs
Some experience at RT in addition to guard. That kind of versatility makes him a more valuable middle round pick since he'll likely being his NFL career as a backup. Better pass blocker than a run blocker, but not above average at either. Stance is high, but can be effective although it does cause problems. Plays with too narrow a base in the run game/ (Mid rounds)
Taylor Thompson Southern Methodist
Sr. 6'5 282 lbs
Would need to add bulk to play DE for the Chargers, but the frame seems able to carry it. However, that is the position he currently plays in SMU's 3-4 defense. However, there's some talk that his athleticism is enough sugh that he could slim down and be a developmental 3-4 OLB. I'm not sure the Chargers would use a mi round pick on such a player though. That sounds more like something they'd do with a UDFA they could stash on the practice squad. (Mid rounds)
Player School Pos. Class Height Weight
Chas Alecxih Pittsburgh DT Sr. 6'3 284 lbs
(Late Rounds)
Chris Jacobson Pittsburgh OG Sr. 6'2 292 lbs
(Late Rounds)
Max Gruder Pittsburgh OLB Sr. 6'1 224 lbs
Max Gruder Pittsburgh OLB Sr. 6'1 224 lbs
Greg Williams
Pittsburgh OLB
Sr. 6'1 238 lbs
Myles Carageein
Pittsburgh DT
Sr. 6'1 287 lbs
Antwuan Reed
Pittsburgh CB
Sr. 5'10 187 lbs
Jordan Gibbs Pittsburgh OT
Sr. 6'5 316 lbs
Greg Gaskins Pittsburgh OT
Sr. 6'4 301 lbs
Kevin Beachum Southern Methodist OG Sr. 6'2 302 lbs
Chris Banjo Southern Methodist S Sr. 5'9 201 lbs
J.T. Brooks Southern Methodist OT Sr. 6'3 230 lbs
Cole Beasley Southern Methodist WR Sr. 5'8 169 lbs