With the 18th Pick in the 2012 Dawgs By Nature Mock Draft, the San Diego Chargers Select...

Feb 27, 2012; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Illinois Fighting Illini defensive lineman Whitney Mercilus does the shuttle run during the NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-US PRESSWIRE

With the 18th pick in the 2012 Dawgs By Nature Community Mock Draft, the San Diego Chargers select...

Whitney Mercilus, DE, Illinois

This selection and write-up was made by Adrock2099:

I was immediately set on picking Whitney Mercilus after selecting the Chargers since, as the New York Giants have shown us, there's no such thing as having too many pass rushers and this dude can definitely get to the quarterback. However, after doing some last minute (actual) research on team needs I found this quote from Chargers manager AJ Smith: "One position we've been looking at... Strong safety... The search is on for strong safety."

I think to just come out and say have they a need at a position like that means they're going to be looking for one pretty early in the draft. That got me thinking about taking someone like Mark Barron, who is considered the best safety coming out this year. Taking him in the middle of the first round, however, would be a big reach. So I ended up where I started with in a guy who I believe to be the best player available and a perfect fit for San Diego's style of defense. He broke Illinois' record for most sacks in a season, ending up with 16 of them to go along with 9 forced fumbles and 55 tackles, 22.5 for a loss. The only knock I could find on the guy is that he was a "one year wonder" type of player, but I think that the Chargers have enough depth at the position to make it worth the gamble. Also, with Peyton Manning under center for the Broncos, rushing the passer just became even more important for their chances of winning the division.

I'm at a loss for what the Chargers need to do. They've been a team built to do some damage for the past several years in the AFC, but overall, they have disappointed big time. Now, they have to contend with Peyton Manning and an improved Chiefs team in the division. Yikes. This is no indication of Mercilus, but I could see whoever San Diego picks here end up flopping.

The Chicago Bears are on the clock next (email will be sent to OrangeAndBrownFever).

Pos Team Player Pos School Drafter
1 Indianapolis Andrew Luck
QB Stanford Ryno III
2 Washington
Robert Griffin III QB Baylor Groza
3 Minnesota Matt Kalil LT USC pt_999
4 Cleveland Justin Blackmon WR Oklahoma State rufio
5 Tampa Bay
Trent Richardson RB Alabama Rounds94
6 St. Louis Morris Claiborne CB LSU SpecialBrownie
7 Jacksonville Quinton Coples DE North Carolina Chalmdeezy
8 Miami Courtney Upshaw OLB Alabama gentryholdem
9 Carolina Dontari Poe DT Memphis nickjs21
10 Buffalo Melvin Ingram OLB South Carolina The New Kardiac Kids
11 Kansas City
David DeCastro OG Stanford Brownie's Year
12 Seattle Luke Kuechly ILB Boston College Jon @ DBN
13 Arizona Riley Reiff OT Iowa Browns town
14 Dallas Janoris Jenkins CB North Alabama bross09
15 Philadelphia Fletcher Cox DT Mississippi State PaduaDSP
16 N.Y. Jets
Michael Floyd WR Notre Dame Legoman0721
17 Cincinnati
Stephen Hill WR Georgia Tech Bernie19Kosar
18 San Diego Whitney Mercilus DE Illinois Adrock2099
19 Chicago OrangeAndBrownFever
20 Tennessee iwearmocs
21 Cincinnati Bernie19Kosar
22 Cleveland rufio
23 Detroit nickmar19
24 Pittsburgh rdy
25 Denver notthatnoise
26 Houston troy145
27 New England
Boston Browns
28 Green Bay
ScottJC
29 Baltimore Ecwingen
30 San Francisco -bobby-
31 New England
Boston Browns
32 N.Y. Giants
Red-Right-88

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