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Why Mike Pouncey Chose the Bolts Over Five Other Teams

Mike Pouncey had no idea he'd be in this position even a week ago.

A three-time Pro Bowler, he spent seven seasons with the Miami Dolphins forging a career as one of the top centers in the game. 

Then a Thursday meeting with the team's executives took place that changed everything. While grateful for his time in Miami, Pouncey requested and was granted his release.

As you'd expect, a long line of suitors immediately reached out. 

Pouncey estimates between five to seven teams were seriously interested in signing him, but once the Chargers got in the mix, the race to secure his services was virtually over.

He badly wanted to be a Bolt…and for good reason.

"As soon as my agent called me and said the Chargers reached out, they went to the top of my list," he explained.  "They have a great quarterback.  A great defense.  An offensive line that played really, really well. I felt like I could be a piece that fits in really well to help this offensive line be even better than it was last year. I'm just excited to be here."

The matter of who he'll be snapping the ball to also can't be overstated.

It's safe to say Pouncey has never had a quarterback of Philip Rivers' caliber under center.

"No disrespect to any of the guys in Miami," he explained.  "I enjoyed my career there for seven years with the Miami Dolphins, but to be able to play with an elite guy like this and a Hall of Fame quarterback is something I always dreamed of in my life.  I can't wait.  I'm so excited.  I can't wait to get to work with him. He's a great football player.  The way he goes to work out there, approaches the game and how competitive he is. I'd tell my guys all the time about the time we played the Chargers a few years ago, and they called his name and he was high-kneeing it out of the tunnel.  He had so much excitement I said, 'That's the kind of guy I want to be with.'  This is an opportunity of a lifetime and I couldn't pass it up."

Meanwhile, Pouncey's relieved he won't have to go toe-to-toe with the Chargers' ferocious defense.   He's gone up against the likes of Melvin Ingram, Joey Bosa and Corey Liuget numerous times in the past, and is thankful to now root them on from the sidelines.

"That's going to be a good thing that I know I get to play with them," he said with a mixture of relief and laughter.  "Those guys up front are good football players.  And to have that combination of Ingram and Bosa, you don't find that too often in this league.  I'm excited to get over here and help these guys get something special, and that's a Super Bowl."

So what kind of player can fans expect when he takes the field?

"Every single day you're going to get my best," he said.  "I love the game of football, and you'll be able to tell by the way I play.  I know offensive linemen don't get noticed much, but I'll go out of my way to make sure you notice me."

While Pouncey may not have imagined how the last week began, he couldn't be happier by how it ended.

"The last week has been a roller coaster," he acknowledged. "There's been so much up and down, but I've been backed up with so much support.  I've been so excited for this process.  I never was able to hit free agency before in my career.  To have the opportunity to come to a place like this and a football team like this is an unbelievable feeling.  I'm so excited for this next chapter of my life.  I can't wait to get started with all these guys, and hopefully win a lot of football games."

Browse through the top photos of former Miami Dolphins stalwart Mike Pouncey, as he agreed to terms on a two-year contract.

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