NFL

Chargers select Alabama OT D.J. Fluker 11th overall

4/25/13 in NFL   |   BrianMaddock   |   1429 respect

The San Diego Chargers used their top pick in the first-round of the 2013 NFL draft to pick up Alabama offensive tackle D.J. Fluker on Thursday.
 
Offensive linesmen continues to be the hottest commodity in the first round of the Thursday’s draft with  six players at the position picked within the top 11 picks . D.J. Fluker is the third-straight Alabama player fourth offensive tackle to be selected in the first round, falling behind Eric Fisher (No.1), Luke Joeckel (No.2) and Lane Johnson (No.3).
 
D.J. Fluker played a key role in helping Alabama to back-to-back BCS National Championships in 2011 and 2012.
 
After serving as a third-string tackle in his first year, D.J. Fluker started 13 games for the Alabama Crimson Tide at right tackle as a redshirted sophomore in 2011. With D.J. Fluker’s help, Alabama’s rushing offense averaged 214.5 yards per game to finish 16th nationally, and top the season with a BCS National Championship victory.
 
Last season, D.J. Fluker again played a big role in keying the run blocking for Eddie Lacy, and was named the second-team AP All-American. Alabama won the BCS National Championship title with a 42-14 win over Notre Dame last season.
 
In three seasons with the Crimson Tide, D.J. Fluker started 36 games at right tackle, before forgoing his final year at Alabama to enter the 2013 NFL draft.
 
Standing at 6-5, 339-pounds, D.J. Fluker is easily amongst the biggest offensive linesmen in this draft, and has long arms (36.75-inch) to match that size. Such qualities give D.J. Fluker the power to dominate the line of scrimmage and will help him open running lanes towards the edge for Ryan Mathews in San Diego. D.J. Fluker will undoubtedly prove a good fit as a pass protector and run blocker in San Diego. Defensive ends will have to be very quick off the snap to out-time D.J. Fluker in their intial pass rush move since he holds the advantage with due to his incredible length and hustle.
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