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2011 Daily Norseman Community Mock Draft - San Diego Chargers

Well, the seventeenth pick is in, and it looks like the Patriots will be attempting to return to their prior dominance in the 3-4 with Aldon Smith, DE/OLB, Missouri. I'm guessing you can scratch the ‘DE' off of that and stick with Smith being an OLB, and he'll be now taking shots at Mark Sanchez, as well as whoever the starting QB will be for the Dolphins and the Bills. Smith secured quite a dominant victory with nearly a quarter of the votes, although Anthony Castonzo was pretty close at 19%. Norv_turner_medium

Shortly after being locked out, however, Smith was pleased to find that mock DeMaurice Smith had arrived with cookies to make up for mock Goodell's lies. However, in order to feast upon the snacks, mock Smith also immediately had to sign onto a mock lawsuit of the NFL.

Next up is the eighteenth pick, owned by the San Diego Chargers. As we know, last season the Chargers actually failed to pull of their typical late season surge and playoff run, and watched the post season from home. Personally, I always figured it was a matter of time- while doing better at the end of the season after a slow start typically is considered better than doing great at the beginning and slumping in the stretch, it was always a fairly insecure manner in which they landed their playoff berth.

So what do the Chargers need in terms of drafted talent to return to the top of an increasingly tough division?

The Chargers were previously boosted by being a division where the opposition was mediocre at best. While the Broncos had a great start in '09 and seemed genuine threats to the Chargers' reign, they later collapsed and have since remained at the bottom of the barrel in the AFC West, to the point that Josh McDaniels found himself on the unemployed list last season. However, the Kansas City Chiefs seem to be on a major upswing, and while Raiders head coach and (I'm pretty certain) certified psychopath Tom Cable also joined McDaniels shortly after the seasons' end, the Raiders did also sweep the division, and could be on a genuine upswing.

The Chargers are fairly solid all around as a team with ridiculous stats on both sides of the ball, and while I don't think quite as highly of Phillip Rivers as some do, there's no denying he's a very good QB. In my personal opinion, I think a great pass rushing DE would be just the thing for the Chargers to regain control of the division. Their main glaring weakness is special teams- but you typically don't target that area in the first round, so I don't think there will be too much discussion on that right now. Of course, our special team superstar Percy Harvin was a first rounder, but of course, he was taken for his WR skills, not his return skills. Furthermore, with the new kicking rules, special team weaknesses may not be impacting teams as much as they did prior seasons.

What say you, Viking faithful? Where will the Chargers go in the draft?

Draft Recap:

  1. Carolina Panthers - Cam Newton, quarterback, Auburn
  2. Denver Broncos - Patrick Peterson, cornerback, LSU
  3. Buffalo Bills - Marcell Dareus, defensive tackle, Alabama
  4. Cincinnati Bengals - Blaine Gabbert, quarterback, Missouri
  5. Arizona Cardinals - Von Miller, linebacker, Texas A&M
  6. Cleveland Browns - A.J. Green, wide receiver, Georgia
  7. San Francisco 49ers - Prince Amukamara, cornerback, Nebraska
  8. Tennessee Titans - Nick Fairley, defensive tackle, Auburn
  9. Dallas Cowboys - Tyron Smith, offensive tackle, USC
  10. Washington Redskins - Julio Jones, wide receiver, Alabama
  11. Houston Texans - Da'Quan Bowers, defensive end, Clemson
  12. Minnesota Vikings - Jake Locker, quarterback, Washington
  13. Detroit Lions - Robert Quinn, defensive end, North Carolina
  14. St. Louis Rams - Cameron Jordan, defensive end, California
  15. Miami Dolphins - Mark Ingram, running back, Alabama
  16. Jacksonville Jaguars - J.J. Watt, defensive end, Wisconsin
  17. New England Patriots - Aldon Smith, defensive end/ outside linebacker, Missouri