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Finding the Right Tackle ("Turret") for the San Diego Chargers

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As I mentioned in my last article, the Chargers need to build a wall for Rivers. They are going to need a tackle (turret) and either a guard (section of wall) or center(gate house). Here's a look at some of the turrets I think would fit to make the best wall.

Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

Growing up in England, and traveling through Europe I got to see more than my share of castles.  So I can tell you from first hand experience, there are tons of different styles of turrets.  There are short but wide turrets that are good for putting heavy siege equipment on and are very thick and strong, there are tall narrow turrets that have much better reach with archers, but aren't as durable, and any variable in between.  Either can be a good choice depending on your desired affect.

I'm going to show you the best turrets in the 2015 draft that should be available when the Chargers are on the clock, and let you know which one I think would help make the best wall, but I would love to hear which you think would work best as well.  These are in no particular order.

La'el Collins - OT #70 - LSU - 6'5" 320lbs (Short Round Turret)

I watched 3 games of his from this year (Ole Miss, Florida, and Wisconsin).  His two biggest assets are his sheer strength, and his hands.  His hands are very good.  Not only does he have very strong "punch" with his hands, but they are very very strong, once he has ahold of a defender it's pretty much over.  The other thing that impressed me was his savvy in picking how/when to hold the defender to maximize the effect while limiting the chance of drawing a penalty.  His feet aren't the best and he isn't the smoothest athlete, but his pure strength and strong hands are enough to make up for most of those deficiencies.

He is a very punishing run blocker.  He is aggressive and strong and drives forward very well.   Only a few times did I see him lean too much which let the defender pull him off balance like this:

More often than not it looked more like this:

The reasons he wouldn't be my first choice are: 1) He might project better as a G 2) He is basically Fluker with slightly better hands and slightly better pass pro 3) He isn't as balanced in pass vs run blocking as I would like to see (but that's just me being nit picky). Overall he wouldn't be my first choice, but I certainly wouldn't be upset if he is the pick.

Ereck Flowers - OT #74 - Miami - 6'6" 324lbs (tall turret)

Flowers is very athletic.  He can move extremely well for his size both in the run and pass game.  He excels in pass blocking due to how well he moves his feet and the fact that he is very good at using his long arms.  He makes the first contact with the defender, punching them before they can engage him.  But his feet set everything up. Notice here, the defender surprises him bursting in and rocking him back, but between his upper body strength and agile lower body he is able to keep his feet under himself and not get bowled over.

As I said he also moves very well in the run game.  Watch how far and how quickly he moves on this outside run, almost beating the RB to that point on the field.  While he doesn't secure the block, I wanted to show you his quickness and aggression at still making contact to try and impact the play.

Flowers would be an excellent pick up for the Chargers.  Mock drafts I have seen have him going anywhere from top 10 to the top end of the 2nd round.  He is quickly rising in popularity, and a good Senior Bowl week will only increase that.  He would be good value for the Chargers at 17, and help keep Rivers clean from the Justin Houstons and Von Millers of the world.

TJ Clemmings - OT #68 - Pitt - 6'6" 315lbs (medium round turret)

I won't go too much into detail because my buddy Kyle Posey has already done a better job than I could on Clemmings.  The only thing I will add is that right now, he would probably be my favorite choice.  He has a very high ceiling and I think adding him would pay dividends for years to come.

Ty Sambrailo - OT #51 - CSU - 6'5" 310lbs (tall narrow turret)

Sambailo didn't get a lot of press because he plays for Colorado State in the Mountain West, but he is one of the surest pass protectors in the Draft.  Before their bowl game vs Utah (and OLB Nate Orchard who was one of the best pass rushers in the NCAA this year) he had not given up a sack in 2 full seasons.  He does it with a combination of good feet, strong punch, and very good awareness. He knows where everyone is around him, both defenders and his help. He doesn't stand too upright, and does a good job of not leaning or bending too much. The area he could improve would be his run blocking. He isn't bad at it, but you definitely wouldn't call him a road grater or mauler.  Also, while he is already pretty good, I don't think he has a much higher ceiling.  He will never be bad, but he also won't be great.  He has a good chance at being there when we pick in the 2nd, but some rumors I've seen have him creeping towards the back end of the 1st.

I also want to quickly mention a few guys that I am not buying the hype on and do not care for...

Cedric Ogbuehi - OT - Texas A&M - 6'5" 305lbs

I watched 4 games (Auburn and Mizz from last year, Miss St and South Carolina from this year). I am not a fan. As you said he does have very good feet, moves very smooth dropping back in pass pro. However for me thats about where the good things end. He has NO "Punch" in pass pro. He is content with letting the defender come to him which results in him getting bull rushed by much smaller guys, and guys with good hand movement (see Dee Ford vs him last year) they are able to get him off balance very easily. I also don't like his run blocking. Rather than being a punishing mauler like Fluker, he tends to favor getting his hands high and wide on the defender to try and steer them. I wouldn't say he is a Great pass protector, but he is above avg, and much better at it than run blocking.  He is a pass for me.

Andrus Peat - OT - Stanford - 6'7" 315lbs

I'm not saying he is bad, but he just isn't for me.  He has a lot of upside but needs a few things fixed IMO. He could definitely stand to improve his strength, he doesn't look as soft as Ogbuehi but he could definitely use some time in the weight room. Next he actually needs to play a little more upright in the upper body. He sets his base very well but he bends at the waist and is very susceptible to being pulled off balance (something Von Miller and Justin Houston do very well).  I also think he could work on having his feet be a little more active. While he does move very well, once he gets to a point he goes flat footed (partially due to his bending issue I think). If he could have "happy feet" a little more I think that would really help him.

As I said, lead architect Tom Telesco will have a lot of options when he starts building this castle.  In my opinion, I agree with my cohort KP and give my thumbs up to TJ Clemmings.

Next article I will look at gate houses(centers).  For all my castle building articles, check out here for your one stop shopping.