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Chargers size up 2011 NFL Draft, take five players in first three rounds

Corey Liuget of Illinois was the 18th pick overall in the NFL Draft.
Corey Liuget of Illinois was the 18th pick overall in the NFL Draft.
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With the 2011 NFL Draft behind them, the San Diego Chargers now focus on training camp. That is of course that we have a training camp and a 2011 season.

In its selection process over three days last week, San Diego tied a franchise record by choosing five players in the first three rounds of the draft, as the Chargers went in the direction of defense and special teams.

After San Diego selected Illinois defensive end Corey Liuget at No. 18 overall, the Chargers then snatched two cornerbacks and an inside linebacker on the draft’s first two days.

“We were extremely excited to have the five (picks) before it flattened out in the fourth round,” Chargers' GM A.J. Smith remarked to Chargers.com. “(Liuget) is a big man. We’re going to pencil him in at defensive end. We can slide him inside and give him some heavy work in there. We just think this is a nasty, physical football player.”

On the offensive side of the ball, the Chargers opted for San Diego State receiver Vincent Brown and Connecticut running back Jordan Todman.

As SDSU fans can note, Brown tallied 1,352 receiving yards last season, while Todman rushed for 1,695 yards for UConn. Both scored double-digit touchdowns.

On the defensive side of the ball, the Chargers went for Clemson cornerback Marcus Gilchrist, USC cornerback Shareece Wright and Missouri linebacker Andrew Gachkar.

The Chargers also grabbed Michigan offensive lineman Steve Schilling, who played guard and tackle for the Wolverines.

In looking back at their choices, I think the Chargers addressed some needs.

Selecting Liuget at 18 was a good choice, especially given the fact that he could be an impact player sooner rather than later.

San Diego also needed to address its special teams debacles from last year, along with some defensive and running back issues.

Whether or not this class drafted can fill those areas will remain to be seen.

That being said, I can't argue with any of the picks the Bolts made; we just now need a season to see them play.

Chargers 2011 Draft Class:

1 - Corey Liuget, DE, Illinois (6-2, 298); 2 - Marcus Gilchrist, CB, Clemson (5-10, 195); 2 - Jonas Mouton, ILB, Michigan (6-1, 239); 3 - Vincent Brown, WR, San Diego State (5-11, 187); 3 - Shareece Wright, CB, USC (5-11, 185); 6- Jordan Todman, RB, Connecticut (5-9, 203); 6 - Stephen Schilling, OG, Michigan (6-4, 308); 7 - Andrew Gachkar, ILB, Missouri (6-2, 233)

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