Soon after center Scott Quessenberry was selected by the Chargers in the fifth round of the 2018 NFL Draft, it was brought to light that the former UCLA Bruin was a fan of the Bolts growing up. This wasn’t all that surprising when you read that Scott is a native of Carlsbad, California, which is just 33 miles north of San Diego.
In high school, Quessenberry was named a three-star recruit and selected to play in the Under Armour All-American game as one of the top center prospects in the country. His position ranks from Scout, Rivals, and ESPN were seventh, fifth, and third, respectively. After 33 total starts at the prep level, Quessenberry took his talents to UCLA where he went on to be an impact player from the jump.
As a freshman in 2013, he saw six total starts: one at center and five at left guard. He opened the following season as the team’s pivot while the original starter was out for a single game before starting at guard for the remainder of the year. He was named honorable mention All-Pac 12 for his efforts. As a true junior in 2015, Quessenberry succumbed to a severe injury which forced the budding star into a medical redshirt year.
Quessenberry, now back and better than ever, finished his final two seasons by starting all 25 games at center. He was named a First-Team All-Pac 12 in 2016 and then earned another honorable mention accolade as a senior in 2017.
Since being drafted by the Chargers, Quessenberry has started nine games while playing in 47 total contests. Those nine all came at center to end the 2019 season after both Mike Pouncey and Forrest Lamp went down with season-ending injuries.
I love it when young players get their shot and crush it. Chargers center (61) Scott Quessenberry has been excellent since taking over the position. Chargers lost Pouncey and Lamp to injury but the run game has been revived because of Okung’s return and SQ’s solid play. pic.twitter.com/coY7i7SyaB— Daniel Jeremiah (@MoveTheSticks) November 4, 2019
Years with team: 3
“Scott Quessenberry signed a 4 year, $2,744,252 contract with the Los Angeles Chargers, including a $284,252 signing bonus, $284,252 guaranteed, and an average annual salary of $686,063. In 2021, Quessenberry will earn a base salary of $920,000, while carrying a cap hit of $991,063 and a dead cap value of $71,063.” - Spotrac.com
Quessenberry is a well-built player for the center position with his boxy and stout frame along with some short-area quickness. Back in 2018, I had him as one of the best center prospects behind the likes of Frank Ragnow and James Daniels, both of which went in the first two rounds of that year’s draft. His film against current Bucs DT Vita Vea during their clashes in the Pac-12 was some of his best film in that it showed his ability to hang with the best of the best.
After the line was re-tooled this offseason, Q-Berry is now one of the veteran lineman on the team, meaning he’ll take on more of a guidance role within the room for the new additions and the younger players.
Despite my high opinion of Q-Berry being a good player, the fact he wasn’t used as a backup at guard in 2020 is bothersome. Tyree St. Louis was not the answer behind Trai Turner and it can’t be understated that he saw immediate snaps ahead of Quessenberry. With no notable injuries, something else has to be going on behind the scenes. Maybe it’s a lack of progression and maybe they just like Q-Berry at center only. Either way, it’s not a positive.
Odds of making the roster/What to expect in 2021?
I predict Quessenberry will make the final roster as one of the team’s most-experienced backups who can play all three of the interior positions. He’ll be the immediate backup at center behind Corey Linsley with the potential to fill in behind both Oday Aboushi and Matt Feiler. In a year where the Bolts finally have “decent” depth on the offensive line, Quessenberry will be all the more important to a team noted for being injury-prone.