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D.J. Fluker takes snaps at guard, still penciled in as Chargers' starting right tackle

SAN DIEGO -- San Diego Chargers head coach Mike McCoy added a bit of levity to the ongoing storyline of whether D.J. Fluker will move from right tackle to right guard this offseason.

At hot topic of discussion, as Fluker finished talking to reporters McCoy alluded to the fact that the University of Alabama product might take on another position during offseason work.

"He’ll be playing center tomorrow," McCoy said, smiling. "They’ll be really asking you questions when you’re playing center."

Though he acknowledged taking a few snaps at guard during organized team activities, Fluker remained at right tackle with the starters on Monday in a session open to reporters. Recent addition Joe Barksdale played right tackle with the second unit.

More important, Fluker said his weight is down from a high of 353 pounds last season to 346, and that he hopes to play at between 330 and 335 pounds once the regular season begins. Fluker said he played at 339 pound his rookie season. Fluker said he moved quicker and performed better in pass protection at the lighter weight.

Fluker said he ran two miles daily this offseason, hired a chef and changed his diet in order to cut weight.

"People don’t understand that five pounds will make a difference in how you play," Fluker said. "You might think that two pounds doesn’t make a difference, but it actually does. It’s either that down block that you have to get, and you’re not quick enough to get there, or that reach block that you have to get. Five pounds makes a difference."

Fluker said that he suffered a "sophomore slump" in his second season, but intends to turn things around in his third year, whether he’s playing tackle or guard.

"Usually after the first year nobody really knows you and they are trying to figure you out," Fluker said. "But after the second year they know what you do and your tendencies. They study you a lot harder the second year. Other than that, I did pretty well, but there is always room for improvement. I haven’t arrived yet."

Fluker will test his ability at a different sport on Tuesday; he’s throwing out the first pitch for the Padres-Mets game.

"I might do two or three," said Fluker with a laugh.