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Bigby a Big Addition to Bolts Secondary
The Chargers already boast one of the finest safeties in the game, Eric Weddle, an All-Pro last season when he led the league with seven interceptions. Heading into 2012, they bolstered their secondary by adding a proven Super Bowl champion into the mix with Atari Bigby.
Entering his eighth NFL season, the 5-fot-11, 215-pounder is a hard hitting thumper whose skillset fits perfectly next to Weddle.
“I’m a team player,” he said. ”I will bring a physical presence in the middle as it is a big part of my game. It’s something that I like to do. I like to play fast, be physical and have fun. I like to play for the fans too, especially home games. That really gets me going.”
Bigby spent his first six years in the NFL with the Green Bay Packers, and his finest season came in 2007 when he set career highs and led the team with 121 tackles and five interceptions. His tackle total was the highest by a Packers defensive back since 1990. He joined the Seattle Seahawks for a brief one-year stint in 2011 before joining the Chargers, an organization he is thrilled to be a part of.
“It feels great to be a San Diego Charger and be out there next to Eric Weddle,” he said. “What else can you ask for? It’s like having another defensive coordinator out there with you. I think we are going to have one of the best tandems at safety this year. I’ve been on a couple of teams, and I can say this has been the smoothest transition. The guys are very supportive and unselfish, and most importantly are hard workers. So it feels great to be a Charger.”
Bigby has also taken it upon himself to mentor the younger players on the roster, such as rookie strong safety Brandon Taylor.
“(Bigby’s) been helping me a whole lot,” said Taylor. “He has a lot of knowledge about the game. He can just look at a play and know what type of coverage we need to put out there on defense. He brings a lot of knowledge to the table and he’s a very physical guy, so he’s been a big help to me so far.”
Based on his play on the field as well as the respect he commands in the locker room, it is apparent Bigby plans on making an immediate impact for the Bolts right from the opening kickoff.
- ESPN’s Jon Gruden and Mike Tirico were on hand in preparation for Thursday night’s national broadcast.
- Vincent Brown had a leaping one-handed grab on a go-route up the right sideline.
- Phllip Rivers rifled a bullet to Micheal Spurlock on the goal line for a touchdown.
- Rivers also hit Antonio Gates for a 15-yard touchdown up the seam.
- Rivers ended the goal line portion of practice with back to back touchdown throws to his running backs – one to Ryan Mathews and another to Ronnie Brown.
- Eric Weddle deflected a pass that Quentin Jammer caught with quick reflexes for an interception in the end zone.
- Kevin O’Connell and Ladarius Green hooked up for a 30-yard gain up the right sideline.
- Mike Willie outmuscled his defender to snatch a touchdown catch from Rivers.
- Willie added another highlight reel play with an athletic grab in which he leaped and reached around his defender to haul in the pass.
- The Chargers have one more walk through in preparation for the preseason opener on Thursday vs. the Packers. Limited tickets are still available. Click here for more information.