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Mailbag: Should We Be Excited About Last Year’s Summer Standout?

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Q: Detrez Newsome was awesome last year in the preseason. Are you as excited to see last year’s summer standout? I’ve love to see him get the rock even more next year. – Henry Evans

A: I’m absolutely excited! Newsome was downright electric last summer, defying the odds to make the squad as an undrafted free agent. I personally won’t ever forget him busting out that cartwheel backflip out of nowhere after finding the end zone the first time. That’s pretty special athleticism. Anyway, Newsome earned his spot with a flashy preseason, toting the rock 42 times for 150 yards and a pair of touchdowns while snaring 10 passes for another 60 yards. However, with the likes of Melvin Gordon and Austin Ekeler ahead of him on the depth chart, he didn’t get many opportunities in the regular season. The good news though is that when his number was called, he rose to the occasion. Just think back to that epic Thursday night comeback against the Kansas City Chiefs. The Bolts don’t pull off that playoff-clinching win without Newsome’s contributions. Overall, he finished with 11 carries for 49 yards and an impressive 4.5 ypc average. He also caught a pair of passes for 19 yards. So yeah, I think we should be excited to see what Newsome can do in the coming months. They say the biggest offseason of a player’s career are those months between year one and year two, so this will be an important one for the running back.

Q: Please ask Joey when his GOT cameo is coming! I need more Joey Big Bear in my life. – Shaina Amos

A: Apparently if you blinked, you missed it! Bosa chimed in on his Instagram account after that awesome Battle of Winterfell episode aired a couple weeks back. They aired his much-ballyhooed appearance cameo in that pivotal episode. Personally, if I’d known he was in that ep I would have put my money down on him to take out the Night King.

Q: How does Gus Bradley feel with the additions of (Nasir) Adderley and (Jerry) Tillery to his defense? – Christian Cavanias

A: He’s pretty dang fired up! I trotted on down to Gus’ office shortly after the picks came in to get his initial reaction, and he was just as pumped up as the fans. It’s easy to see why. Make sure you read the full stories on why he was all smiles after the team landed Tillery and how he was “shocked” the Bolts were able to get Adderley. At the same time, Bradley stressed nothing will be given to either player. They’ll have to earn their roles. While he opened up in various ways, here are my two personal favorite quotes from the stories:

On Tillery: “His length (is impressive). He has really good length. He’s disruptive. You’ve got to have a guy who can play the run, but his ability to rush (the passer from the interior) can help as well. We didn’t have as many balls batted down at the line of scrimmage as we would have liked, and his ability to do that with his length should help in that area as well. But he can really disrupt. He can affect the quarterback.”

On Adderley: “He has a lot of range. You see him make plays from red line to red line, sideline to sideline. He’ll come up and tackle. Back there in that middle third, you need that type of athlete.  He’s got really good ball skills. They also played him close to the line of scrimmage at times where you saw him come up and make tackles in the open field. At that safety spot how we play it, he’s got to be able to have that skillset. He’s very aggressive, but plays the game very well. So he has a great chance in this defense.”

Q: What goes down at Rookie Minicamp? – Caleb Starks

A: It’s really the ultimate crash course for these players, and it’s invaluable. This is their first true exposure to the system and their coaches. It’s a great baseline for the organization to see exactly where the players are at, and how they’ll best fit in. One of my personal favorite things about rookie minicamp is how it’s a true “dream come true” moment, and it’s pretty powerful to witness. Think about it. Their entire lives they dream of being NFL players, and here they are, donning actual jerseys and practicing as members of the Chargers. It’s truly special. At the same time, it’s serious business as they’ll be thrown right into the fire the following week when they join the veterans. The rest of the team isn’t going to slow down so that the rookies can acclimate themselves easier, so they’ll have to put in work to keep up with the vets.

Q: Where will training camp take place this season? – Manuel Carbajal

A: It’ll be the same spot as the past two years – Jack Hammett Sports Complex in Costa Mesa. And that’s great news for the fans. It’s an awesome place to catch Philip Rivers, Keenan Allen, Derwin James and the rest of the Bolts up close and personal. Also, always a good chance to get some autographs and selfies with the players. Stay tuned in the coming weeks for more information about when camp begins, and which dates will be open. Can’t wait to see everyone out there again.

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