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Chargers Draft Notre Dame DT Jerry Tillery with Pick 28 in the NFL Draft

The Chargers added to their defensive line on Thursday night in Nashville, grabbing Notre Dame DT Jerry Tillery with the 28th overall pick.

“He was (the last one),” Chargers GM Tom Telesco told the media Thursday night.

“He was it, which I give our scouts credit. They saw him, they liked him. They had him in the right spot for us. Everybody’s board is a little bit different, but also, knowing with the 28th pick that we got a guy that we feel is a solid first round player.

“You don’t always get that at the 28th pick. I told everybody, ‘We may have to (select) a guy on our board that is (a) top of the second round player with the first pick if we can’t trade out.’ I had no problem with that at all, but it worked out that Jerry was there — and we took him.”

Tillery’s production frequently fails to match his skill set, and his inconsistency is frustrating, but there’s a lot to like about his upside.

He’s a well-built defensive tackle with excellent length and top-end speed. His vertical jump (32 inches) and short shuttle (4.33) results were outstanding, and those tests tend to correlate with defensive tackles succeeding in the NFL. He flashes as a pass-rusher and stacks blockers in the running game.


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