Here’s how the Chargers’ rookies might contribute this season
How these rookies might be contributing this season:
JERRY TILLERY: Long, tall and athletic defensive lineman who should get plenty of time in the team’s rotation up front. Offseason shoulder surgery slowed start to the preseason, but the first-round pick appears to be healthy now.
NASIR ADDERLEY: Expected to compete for the starting job at free safety, the second-round pick missed much of August because of a hamstring issue that dates to spring. Returned to practice in final days of training camp.
TREY PIPKINS: Drafted in the third round as a raw prospect at left tackle, he showed flashes of ability but also struggled mightily at times in preseason. Chargers still like his potential, but he remains more of a project.
DRUE TRANQUILL: Described as being a “backyard” player by one of his teammates, the fourth-round pick will be an immediate contributor on special teams. Great instincts and understanding of schemes could lead to additional reps on defense.
EASTON STICK: Another longer-term project, the fifth-round pick had a predictably uneven training camp and preseason. Struggled trying to separate himself in battle to be the team’s third quarterback.
EMEKE EGBULE: Athletic, versatile linebacker at a position where the Chargers have depth. He received reps with the first team at times in training camp, mostly to gauge the sixth-rounder’s readiness for a real NFL game.
CORTEZ BROUGHTON: Defensive lineman who provides depth at a position filled with veterans and players with more potential. This figures to be more of a learning year for the seventh-round pick.
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