Notre Dame Defensive Coordinator Clark Lea joined Thursday's episode of Chargers Weekly to discuss three former Irish players who officially joined the Bolts last weekend.
Los Angeles selected defensive tackle Jerry Tillery in the first round (No. 28 overall) and linebacker Drue Tranquill in the fourth round (No. 130 overall) of the 2019 NFL Draft. Soon after, the team agreed to terms with punter Tyler Newsome.
Highlights from the conversation with Lea are below.
Breaking down Tillery's game:
"On the field, he is prideful and competitive and tough. One thing that's kind of been missed here [is] Jerry played kind of the majority of the season with a shoulder injury that he sustained in the Stanford game and never once flinched. I mean, it was never – he never went into protection mode, which is easy to do when you're his stature of player. It was always about trying to put our team in the best position to compete for a national championship. When we put on our effort film … Jerry's all over that because he can turn and run and burst, and he makes plays on the perimeter from inside out. He can cause turnovers with his effort. And so, you have a tough player that plays with a high motor, and probably his best attribute is his ability to rush the passer with length."
On two-time captain Tranquill:
"Drue Tranquill is just wired differently. He's just different than any player I've ever coached. He is a machine when it comes to his work ethic, a machine when it comes to how he approaches his craft both in terms of how he treats his body and his work output. ... I fully expect Drue to thrive. He's gonna contribute, he's gonna to add to the fabric of the team and he has the skillset to play. He's got the skillset to be an NFL starter and he won't stop, he won't relent, until he's accomplished that."
On Newsome's work ethic:
"So, Tyler we adopted in our offseason training program. The specialists at time[s] would fold into the linebacker group, and so Tyler is a linebacker in mentality. Here's a guy who's tough, who's resilient. … When we were doing our team building competition stuff and there would be accountability lifts or runs for guys that were falling short of standard in certain areas, and those would happen on Wednesday morning, Tyler Newsome – regardless of whether his particular unit was involved or not – he would show up to every single one. And, it was a statement he was making to the team as to what's important, and that's the fact that when one guy falters, we all falter."
Listen to the entire interview on Chargers Weekly, which is available on Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, TuneIn, Google Play, YouTube and the official Chargers app. A five-star rating/review is appreciated and will help spread the word to other fans this offseason.