#NFL100Memories – 4/100

Being Disappointed in Drafting Joey Bosa – By Lee Wakefield (@Wakefield90)

Strange title, right? You’re asking yourself, how can anyone be disappointed to draft Joey Bosa?

Well, to tell you the truth I kind of was…

For my first installment of our NFL 100 Memories series, I’m going to take you back to the 2016 NFL Draft in Chicago, Illinois.

Regular readers and listeners will know me and my love of college football and the NFL Draft, I first started taking notice of the draft in around 2010; I’d been watching football for around 3 years; I’d probably attached myself to the Chargers for a couple of those and I was properly hooked on football by this point.

Back then, I didn’t take too much notice of college football, I just did what a lot of people do – Once the Superbowl had taken place, I started reading articles on prospects and starting building ideas in my head of who I wanted to Chargers to take and didn’t really scratch beyond the surface whilst doing so.

The first big draft I remember lots of buzz about was the now legendary 2011 draft… You know, the one where the Chargers snagged none other than Corey Luiget… Yeah, you can see why I wasn’t enamored with the draft back then, can’t you?

Another reason was that around that time, the Chargers were stuck in this draft purgatory of finishing 7-9, 8-8 or 9-7 for years. The draft is no fun when you’re picking in the middle of each round, I mean, is anything fun in football when you’re head coach is Mike McCoy? Maybe I’ll answer that one in another one of my memories…

As time went on, my interest in the draft and college football grew, the Chargers actually got worse and worse and by the end of the 2015 season, the team was on the verge of leaving San Diego and had just posted a 4-12 record to finish bottom of the AFC West.

By this time, my interest in college football had grown significantly, I mean, it wasn’t much fun watching the Chargers at that point, so maybe it was a method of taking my mind off it all?

This all aligned perfectly in terms of my love affair with the draft, in that the chargers now owned the 3rd overall pick in the 2016 draft, my virtue of that 4-12 record. 

The 2016 draft was all about QB’s at the top, namely, Jared Goff and Carson Wentz, and once the Rams and Eagles traded up into the first and second overall picks, the Chargers essentially had their pick of any none-QB in the draft.

How exciting for someone like me, someone who had just fallen deeply in love with the draft?! To boot, this was the first year where I really started evaluating prospects quite thoroughly, watch back through their college tape and write my own mock drafts.

In the spring of 2016, I’d done my research and given we were in the midst of the Legion of Boom dominating the league and Denver having just won Superbowl 50 with their No-Fly Zone secondary, I was dying for the Chargers to select Jalen Ramsey.

Everyone knows I love defense and in particular, defensive backs and I think that Ramsey was really the first draftee DB who I was truly smitten with. He was the perfect height and weight for a cover corner, he was athletic, explosive and he was fantastic in coverage…. Oh, and he had that chirp. I love my DB’s to have some chirp to their game, I actually think it’s an essential part of being a top defensive back – to have supreme self confidence – and we still see that to this day in Ramsey.

So here we GO… Draft night, as expected Goff and Wentz are off the board and the Chargers are up and Goodell is on stage and he announces, “with the third pick of the 2016 NFL Draft, the San Diego Chargers select… Joey Bosa, defensive end, Ohio State”.

Ooft.

I mean, I liked Bosa, I thought he was a great prospect but he’s just not who I wanted… as I said, I was genuinely disappointed at the time. I wanted the Chargers to form another Legion of Boom, I wanted a lock down secondary to combat the passing league that the NFL has become, I wanted JALEN RAMSEY.

I guess in hindsight it’s sort of worked out pretty well. The Chargers now have one of the best pass rushing duos in the league in Bosa and Melvin Ingram and we have Gus Bradley as out defensive coordinator and years down the line, are on the way to creating their own lockdown defense, in the mould I always wanted… And, if the Jags don’t cough up, Jalen Ramsey might want out of Jacksonville soon too… You know what I’m thinking, don’t you?

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