SAN DIEGO -- With an extra week available to them after hiring new head coach Anthony Lynn in January, the Los Angeles Chargers will begin offseason work on the field Monday.
Storylines this week include how cornerback Jason Verrett and receiver Keenan Allen are recovering from ACL knee surgeries that cut short their 2016 campaign, along with running backs Melvin Gordon (hip, knee) and Branden Oliver’s (torn Achilles) return from injury and nose tackle Brandon Mebane’s return from a torn biceps that cut short his 2016 season.
And of course, we’ll talk to players about the oddity of beginning offseason workouts in San Diego while the team will move to Los Angeles to play games in a few months.
Now, let’s get to your questions from this week’s mailbag:
@eric_d_williams What WR do you see the chargers drafting?
— K87JB (@K87Jb) March 31, 2017
@eric_d_williams: With Allen expected to be healthy for the start of the regular season, and Tyrell Williams, Travis Benjamin and Dontrelle Inman all playing significant roles in the offense last year, the Chargers have pretty good depth at receiver.
However, the Chargers did have their share of injuries at the position last season. And if they look to add a receiver early, I really like the versatility of a player like Eastern Washington’s Cooper Kupp.
At 6-foot-2 and 205 pounds, Kupp is a polished route runner with soft hands who can get open on the perimeter or in the slot.
Kupp was highly productive, finishing as the top pass-catcher in FCS history with 428 career receptions for 6,464 receiving yards and 73 touchdowns.
And Kupp played well when he had a chance to face top college competition, totaling eight catches for 145 yards and three touchdowns against University of Washington three years ago. And Kupp also recorded 15 catches and 246 receiving yards and three touchdowns against Oregon two years ago.
The only question for Kupp is long speed. He ran a 4.62-second 40-yard dash at the NFL scouting combine and improved to 4.56 seconds at his pro day. But Kupp plays faster than that on the field and would be a good addition to the Chargers’ receiver group.
@eric_d_williams Are they considering Mangold
— Jason Moose Ciano (@Chargersmoose) March 31, 2017
@eric_d_williams: I thought Nick Mangold would have made sense for the Chargers. Lynn is familiar with the 33-year-old center from his time with the New York Jets, and Mangold played with Matt Slauson there.
A third-round selection in last year’s draft by the Chargers, Tuerk did not play last season as he worked his way back from an ACL injury suffered his final season at USC. Pulley split time with D.J. Fluker at right guard and served as the backup center behind Slauson.
“We expect him to come in and try and win a job, that’s what you expect,” Chargers GM Tom Telesco said when asked about the expectations for Tuerk in 2017. “He played behind Slauson all last year and Matt played very well. With Max coming off the ACL halfway through his college year, we knew it was going to be a bit of a slow process for him.
“I don’t think he missed a day of training camp, so he was ahead of schedule. But it still takes time coming back from that injury. We expect him to come in and win a job.”