A few minutes with Chas Alecxih

SAN DIEGO -- With the San Diego Chargers experiencing injuries and depth issues at defensive line, one player who will get a longer look is defensive lineman Chas Alecxih.

At 6-foot-3 and 304 pounds, Alecxih (pronounced ah-LEX-ee) signed with Miami in 2012 as an undrafted rookie free agent and spent most of the season on the Dolphins’ practice squad. He was released by the Dolphins in May of 2013, and was picked up by Kansas City in February of this year.

Waived by the Chiefs in June, the Chargers claimed Alecxih off of waivers that month.

Alecxih, 25, went to college at Pittsburgh as a walk-on and eventually earned a scholarship his sophomore season. He played in 41 career games for the Panthers, recording 127 tackles, 33 tackles for loss, 20 sacks, three forced fumbles, an interception and a blocked kick.

Alecxih gets his unique last name from grandfather Peter Sr., who is Serbian. He also gets some of his football pedigree from his grandfather, who played defensive tackle for Navy.

"It’s a weird one man," Alecxih said about his last name. "I don’t think I’ve met anyone who could spell it or even say it right the first time they saw it."

Alecxih played base defensive end and defensive tackle in a 4-3 defensive front in college. But he has experience in a 3-4 defensive front from his time in Kansas City.

The Pitt product provides versatility, with the ability to play both defensive tackle and defensive end. But his main strength is the energy he brings both in practice and in games.

"I feel like I give 100 percent effort, which is a big thing," Alecxih said. "I feel like I’ve got pretty quick hands, and I keep my feet moving on the pass rush. I feel like I can anchor down there (and be stout in the run game) if I have to."

He also has a big personality. A communications major at Pitt, Alecxih is engaging and approachable, and has fit in well with the rest of San Diego’s position group along the defensive line.

"I talk a lot," Alecxih said, smiling. "I’m pretty goofy. Going into new situations I’m always a little quiet the first few days to kind of feel it out. But it’s such a cool group here. We’re all very similar in age from 27 to like 22 or 23 years old. So we all get along real well."

For the past few weeks of the preseason, Alecxih will be working to carve out a niche on San Diego’s roster so he can stick around long term.

"A lot of it is just showing that you can do your job," Alecxih said. "And no matter what the situation or the day, you’re going to be the same guy every day, and give everything you’ve got."