Name: Mike Bercovici
College: Arizona State
NFL games played: 0
Games played for the Chargers: 0
Fun fact: Bercovici was part of Season 3 of 'Undrafted', a program showing the process of 6 UDFAs trying to find a home in the NFL.
Bercovici is small for an NFL QB, standing at just 6'0, and it was this - combined with questionable decision making and inconsistent accuracy - that meant no team took a flyer on Bercovici with a 2016 draft pick. However, the Chargers saw enough in him (and his undoubtedly talented, powerful arm) to sign Bercovici as a priority UDFA after the 2016 NFL Draft had concluded.
After a strong start to preseason where Bercovici led the Chargers to a dominant victory over the Arizona Cardinals, there was real chatter about Bercovici replacing Kellen Clemens as the #2 QB on the roster, and potentially even being the Chargers QB of the future. Unfortunately, Bercovici followed up a disappointing performance against the Vikings in Week 3 with an unconvincing one against the 49ers in Week 4, and he was released by the Chargers in the last round of cuts. The Chargers re-signed Bercovici to a futures contract this January, and the QB will have another chance at trying to convince the Chargers coaching staff that he's worth keeping around.
Whilst in college, Bercovici won... well, almost everything. According to Chargers.com, he was the recipient of ASU’s 2015 Pat Tillman Outstanding Academic Achievement Award, Danny White Offensive MVP Award, Frank Kush Captains Award, national Lee Roy Selmon Community Spirit Award and Senior CLASS Award. As you can probably infer by the names of some of those awards, not only was Bercovici a star on the field (3,854 passing yards and 30 TDs in his final season at ASU), but he was just as impressive off the field, too.
Voted a unanimous team captain by his teammates at ASU, Bercovici was an 11 time - 11! - ASU scholar baller, given to players with at least a 3.2 GPA as well as significant on the field talent. That means Bercovici had a GPA of 3.2 in 11 of his semesters at college - pretty impressive stuff. It's no wonder that NFL.com once named him the 10th smartest player in college football.
Bercovici graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Business Management with a GPA of 3.25 in just three years, and earned his Masters in Sports Law and Business in December 2015. Essentially, if Bercovici isn't a genius, he's the next closest thing to it.
'Leader' is a word that can be applied to Bercovici, but not just on the field. He was incredibly active in giving back to the community during his time at ASU. Bercovici put in more than 50 hours during his career helping out at Youth Football camps, and spent another 50+ hours making trips to help the community, including numerous visits to children's hospitals and schools. Bercovici is just a good guy in general, and undoubtedly someone you'd be happy with as the face of your franchise.
The list doesn't stop there, either. Bercovici was the pace setter for part of 'Pat's Run,' a yearly race on the ASU campus dedicating to honoring the life of ASU alumna Pat Tillman. This is a man who understands what's important in life - which explains why he teamed up with famous agent Drew Rosenhaus to create a presentation aimed at helping student athletes setting themselves up for a future after sports. That'd be impressive enough for anybody to do - but considering Bercovici was himself in college while he did it belies a man wise beyond his years.
There's a lot to like about Bercovici. He's smart, dedicated, well-liked by everyone, and has a clear vision of what he wants to do in life.
Here's hoping everything works out the way he plans.