New head coaches like to make a statement early in their careers and Mike McCoy is probably no different for the San Diego Chargers. Could he and the front office pull off a draft robbery by snagging top prospect Luke Joeckel?
Protecting Philip Rivers is priority one for McCoy and Chargers
The reasoning behind hiring Mike McCoy was obvious to anybody with common football knowledge. San Diego aims to get the very best out of quarterback Philip Rivers while he still has youth on his side. The past few seasons the talent level on the Chargers offense has slipped as their best players either retire or leave in free agency. Former GM A.J. Smith failed to keep up with the losses, which was why he and head coach Norv Turner lost their jobs. McCoy comes in as one of the hot, young coordinators in the league with a reputation for flexibility and quarterback grooming. However, in order to do that he will need key pieces on the roster to get the most out of Rivers. The four-time Pro Bowler has his advantages but he is also lazy in his mechanics and almost entirely immobile. That means McCoy must get back to the basics in his teachings and the front office must prioritize giving him protection. Could that mean the normally status quo Bolts make an aggressive move in the draft?
Geno Smith and Matt Barkley could impact top of NFL draft
From a pure talent standpoint it's clear the 2013 version of the NFL draft is far different from 2012. Unlike a year ago quarterbacks are not dominating the pool like Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III did. Most draft experts agree the best player on the big board is Texas A&M left tackle Luke Joeckel. His body, balanced excellence on passes and runs, and experience against top competition make him a prime choice for teams needing an anchor on their offensive line. It's not surprise mock drafts already have the Kansas City Chiefs using their first overall pick on him, but given the history of the event they haven't accounted for the wild cards. A good number of the teams in the top ten slots need a quarterback, the Chiefs included. The top two names so far on boards is West Virginia star Geno Smith and USC senior Matt Barkley. The fanfare around these two isn't even close to Luck or Griffin but they still have the talent and intelligence to muck up the top end of the draft. San Diego certainly knows this. Sitting at the 11th pick, there is a chance where Kansas City takes Smith and Joeckel slips by the Oakland Raiders in favor of their defensive needs. This would leave Philadelphia as the probable taker. If the Chargers could work out a deal with the new Eagles management it's not a stretch to see them jump up to grab the left tackle.
Mike McCoy joined the San Diego Chargers with the purpose of getting the best out of Philip Rivers. That means doing what is necessary to protect him. Luke Joeckel is a Holy Grail type prize but if the price isn't over the top then the Bolts should at least consider it.
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