COSTA MESA, Calif. -- Don’t get comfortable.
That’s basically the message from Los Angeles Chargers general manager Tom Telesco to players on his initial 53-man roster.
All the Chargers’ selections from this year’s draft except second rounder Forrest Lamp (on injured reserve due to ACL knee surgery) and five undrafted rookies made the team’s initial, 53-man roster. In all, 20 players on this year’s roster were not part of the initial, 53-man roster at the start of last season.
“I like where we are right now,” Telesco said in a conversation with reporters. “I still think we have work to do. When you talk about the roster, it’s never over, it’s never done.
“We made two claims today [Sunday]. There were some other claims that we made that we didn’t get. But we’ll keep after it and see if anybody else can help us moving forward. So it’s a never-ending process of trying to get the right team on the field.”
The players the Chargers claimed were offensive lineman Michael Schofield and defensive back Jeff Richards off waivers, releasing receiver Geremy Davis and cornerback Craig Mager to make room on the 53-man roster.
Telesco said Schofield -- a third-round selection by the Denver Broncos in the 2014 draft who was released on Saturday -- will provide depth up front and should make an easy transition since the Broncos run the similar scheme.
“We’re looking at him as a guard more than a tackle,” Telesco said. “But that fact that he has some versatility is nice. We’re just looking to add depth on the offensive line.
“As the year goes on it gets harder and harder to add some good depth at different positions, so you have an opportunity at the cut to 53 -- it’s a good place to do that. He’s tough, he’s smart and he’s been very durable and accountable there in Denver.”
At 6-foot-2 and 200 pounds, Telesco said Richards, claimed after the Carolina Panthers released him on Saturday, will start out at corner.
Telesco said releasing veteran safety Dwight Lowery was one of the team’s toughest cuts, but the Chargers felt they had solid depth at the position. Lowery, who played the most defensive snaps for the Chargers last season (961), was scheduled to make $2 million if on the team’s roster in Week 1.
“You try and do what you think is best for the football team at that moment,” Telesco said. “And we just felt like we had a pretty deep group at safety and all of those guys had done some positive things.
“After a lot of discussion, it was a decision we had to make. Dwight did an excellent job for us last year. He’s a great pro, handles himself extremely well, and I still think he has football in front of him. It was a very difficult decision, but we went with the five that we have right now, and I think it’s a pretty strong group.”
As far as when the Chargers will see rookie Mike Williams on the field, Telesco reiterated there’s no time table for the Clemson product’s return, other than they hope to get him practicing in a few weeks.
Telesco said Williams also has put in extra time with the offensive coaching staff going through walk-throughs and classroom time to get familiar with the playbook.
“He’ll do more this week and the following week as far as what he’s doing on the side, that will continue to progress,” Telesco said. “And then we’ll gradually start to work him into practice after that. We still have some weeks in front of us.
“It’s not only rehabbing the injury, but he has to get back ready in football condition again, running routes and the timing in the offense and everything like that. So there’s still work in front of him, but obviously it’s very encouraging where he is right now. Hopefully it continues to be positive.”