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Chargers Stick with Tradition, Keep 3 UDFA's on Roster
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With names such as Antonio Gates and Malcom Floyd to name a few, the San Diego Chargers have a rich history of undrafted free agents making the final roster.Tenny Palepoi, RB Branden Oliver and CB Chris Davis.
All three players were disheartened when they weren’t drafted in May, but as Palepoi pointed out, knowing the team’s successful run developing and keeping UDFA’s played a part in his decision to join the Bolts.
“It feels good because I knew coming in the history of undrafted free agents in San Diego,” he explained. “I knew my chances of making this team, so it feels good to actually be here. But I’m not satisfied. I’m going to keep working my butt off and do what I can to help.”
It turned out to be a wise decision for the 6-1, 298-pounder who turned heads with his strong work ethic, non-stop motor and production over the past few months. Going undrafted turned out to be a boon for both Palepoi and the Bolts.
“This is a blessing man!” he said excitedly. “Obviously the hard work isn’t done now and I’ve got to keep doing what I’ve been doing since I’ve been here. All I want to do is help this team win and contribute as much as I can. Obviously it was rough being undrafted, but it is what it is. I’m here now and I’m on the team. I’m happy to be a Charger and I want to represent this organization and do what I can to improve the team.”
Palepoi finished tied for seventh on the team with eight tackles this preseason. Meanwhile, Oliver ranked second among all running backs with 161 yards on 35 carries, averaging 4.6 yards per attempt with one touchdown. Davis recorded six tackles and 0.5 sacks in addition to showing strong coverage blanketing receivers. He also returned seven punts.