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2010 NFL Draft - San Diego Chargers
Fresno State RB Ryan Mathews
Fresno State RB Ryan Mathews
CollegeFootballNews.com
Posted Apr 24, 2010


San Diego Chargers - AFC West, 2010 Draft Selections & Prospects


San Diego Chargers

2010 NFL Draft Analysis
1st Round (1-16) | 31st Round (17-32) | 2nd Round | 3rd Round
4th Round | 5th Round | 6th Round | 7th Round | Top Free Agents

- CFN 2010 Draft Central
- 10 Biggest Reaches

2010 NFL Draft Team Analysis - AFC
EAST Buffalo | Miami
New England | NY Jets

WEST Denver | Kansas City
 Oakland | San Diego

NORTH Balt. | Cincinnati  Cleveland | Pittsburgh

SOUTH Houston | Indy
Jacksonville | Tenn.

2010 NFL Draft Team Analysis - NFC
EAST Dallas | NY Giants
Philadelphia | Wash.

WEST Arizona | San Fran.
Seattle | St. Louis

NORTH Chicago | Detroit
Green Bay | Minnesota

SOUTH Atlanta | Carolina
New Orleans | Tampa Bay

First Round
Ryan Mathews, RB Fresno State 6-0, 218 (Jr.)
Overall Pick No. 12 CFN Overall Ranking: 23

This is what you do if you desperately need a player and don’t want to screw around. The Chargers got an every down back, unlike a C.J. Spiller, and they traded up with Miami to get a home run hitter with size and the potential to be a big-time producer for a team that needed one missing piece. Mathews is an instant upgrade.

Very fast on the field, he showed at the Combine that he really was fast with a 4.45 in the body of a big back. Basically, if you liked him on film, you loved him even more after his workouts. Unlike the other top runners in this draft, Mathews has the potential to be a workhorse runner who can touch the ball 25 times per game and can be just as explosive. A home-run hitter who ripped up some of the better teams on the schedule, Mathews can take it the distance with just a little bit of room and a hole to cut back through. Not just a runner, he has nice hands and can be used on third downs as a receiver, too. There’s a lot of wear on the tires and he’ll likely have a short shelf life, but the three or four years of production should be huge.
CFN Projection: Late First Round

Third Round (from San Francisco)
Donald Butler, ILB Washington 6-1, 245
Overall Pick 79 CFN Overall Ranking: 40

The Chargers didn’t necessarily need a tough linebacker, but he’s too good a prospect to let fall any further. While defensive lineman might be the bigger need, getting Butler, a fringe-first round talent, this late is a gift.

Now this is an NFL inside linebacker. Out of all the prospects who try to fit several types for different roles, Butler has the prototype tools. He’s big, ripped, and threw around 35 reps of 225 pounds at the Combine and looked every bit the part. While he’s far stronger in the weight room than he plays on the field, he moves well, is decent in pass coverage, and has a great motor. And yes, while he’s an inside linebacker, he could play outside in a 4-3 and be just fine.
CFN Projection: Third Round

Fourth Round   (from Miami)
Darrell Stuckey, SS Kansas 5-11, 205
Overall Pick 110 CFN Overall Ranking: 85

The right pick at the right time, Stuckey could’ve gone in the third round and no one would’ve blinked. The Chargers have a good, sound speedster for the middle of the secondary with the skills to be a ball-hawker and an instant starter. He could turn out to be the pick of the early fourth round if he’s allowed to go after the ball.

With decent size and terrific speed, he has the upside to be a great value pick. The sub-4.5 speed makes him a candidate for any safety spot and a near-perfect fit for the cover-2. He’s not known for being physical and he isn’t a strong hitter, but his range and athleticism should be enough to hold down a job for a long time. With his work ethic and his toughness, he’ll make himself into a better player, but he isn’t going to get much bigger and he doesn’t have top end range. His stock was far higher last year than it was after a mediocre 2009, but he could be a great selection in the middle rounds.
CFN Projection: Fourth Round

Fifth Round  (from Cleveland from Denver)
Cam Thomas, DT North Carolina 6-4, 330
Overall Pick 146 CFN Overall Ranking: 48

So why did a tackle, who might be the best run stopper in the entire draft, slide? He doesn’t bring it play in and play out. On raw tools and upside he’s a top 20 player, but on effort he’s fifth rounder, and he can’t even look at a hamburger without gaining more gut weight. However, for the San Diego 3-4, he could be a phenomenal late find.

One of the best pure defensive tackles in the draft, he’s not going to fly into the backfield but he’ll be a brick wall against the run. After a great Combine with 31 reps and showing off the pure bulk everyone wants in the middle of the line, his stock quickly rose. Unlike Terrence Cody, Thomas is really big but without a ton of bad weight; he’s just strong. While he had a good Tar Heel career, he didn’t have a great one and struggled to shake some ankle problems. His biggest problem is the slow motor and a lax attitude that’ll turn off more than a few teams; he’ll need a coach to do some butt-kicking on a regular basis.
CFN Projection: Third Round

Fifth Round 
Jonathan Crompton, QB Tennessee 6-3, 222
Overall Pick 168 CFN Overall Ranking: Free Agent

The Chargers could use a steady, smart backup to work behind Phil Rivers, and while he’ll never be a starter, and the team is dead in the water if he is, he can step in and produce for a game or two … down the road. He has decent tools and will get the time to develop them.
CFN Projection: Free Agent

Seventh Round 
Dedrick Epps, TE Miami 6-3, 250
Overall Pick 224 CFN Overall Ranking: Free Agent

If Epps can be a blocker right away and show he can possibly be used in two tight end sets with Antonio Gates, he has a chance. He’s not the best athlete around, but he’s not all that bad and could be just quick enough to work as a receiver as well as an H-Back. If he can do a little bit at fullback, that would be even better.
CFN Projection: Free Agent