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ERoyal248
08-21-2010, 11:45 AM
Signed in June as a possible replacement for holdout left tackle Marcus McNeill, Tra Thomas has decided to retire from football, according to Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune.

While this further erodes the Chargers' depth at tackle, the plan for Thomas to take over for McNeill was scuttled weeks ago. After lining up as a starter in OTAs, Thomas entered training camp as a backup. He underwent knee surgery early in training camp and didn't appear to be a lock to make the roster.

Still, the Chargers are now without a veteran safety net at left tackle. They will have to rely on their young players -- Brandon Dombrowski especially -- unless McNeill comes back into the fold.

http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2010/08/21/tra-thomas-decides-to-retire/

WhoDeyBengals
08-21-2010, 12:02 PM
Ouch. I'd say this gives Marcus McNeill a little more leverage in his holdout. Alvin Keels must be having a great day today.

Fargo
08-21-2010, 12:04 PM
Will AJ's colossal ego cave into the dangerously thin depth at LT?

Rivers needs a good man at LT or the offense will suffer immensely.

McSmashie
08-21-2010, 12:24 PM
Congrats on a long, good career, Tra. :salute:

Good luck in your next ventures!



As far as SD goes, voids create opportunity. While I hope no one is able to step up to that opportunity, but some young guy is going to get a shot to shine.

Should be an interested situation to watch develop.

thatkidhunt
08-21-2010, 12:26 PM
Congrats on a long, good career, Tra. :salute:

Good luck in your next ventures!



As far as SD goes, voids create opportunity. While I hope no one is able to step up to that opportunity, but some young guy is going to get a shot to shine.

Should be an interested situation to watch develop.

Good point Smash, and I fear the same.



Also, pretty good career Tra, heres to you. :salute:

Chargerbomb
08-21-2010, 02:13 PM
Will AJ's colossal ego cave into the dangerously thin depth at LT?

Rivers needs a good man at LT or the offense will suffer immensely.

The myth that you need an elite left tackle to have a great offense has been shot with the past superbowl. The Saints and Colts were outstanding all year with 2 scrubs named Jermon Bushrod and Charlie Johnson guarding the blindside. Great QB's with quick releases and the experience to read blitz schemes can succeed without a dominant left tackle. Rivers fits the bill.

Tra Thomas had already dropped to 3rd on the depth chart after minicamp. The writing was on the wall.

The options are:

Brandyn Dombrowski - former UDFA who stepped in and played well at RT the last 7 games of the season after Clary went down. Better run-blocker than pass-blocker, but he didn't get dominated at any point last season by the pass-rush.

Tyronne Green - 2009 4th round pick, initially thought to be a guard or center. He is only 6'2, but apparently has a huge wingspan and quick feet. He was practicing with the 1st team this past week before he rolled his ankle.

Ryan Otterson - UDFA out of Oregon. He will play extensively at LT against the Cowboys, but if they have to rely on him in any fashion during the season, something is very wrong.

Fargo
08-21-2010, 02:16 PM
The myth that you need an elite left tackle to have a great offense has been shot with the past superbowl. The Saints and Colts were outstanding all year with 2 scrubs named Jermon Bushrod and Charlie Johnson guarding the blindside. Great QB's with quick releases and the experience to read blitz schemes can succeed without a dominant left tackle. Rivers fits the bill.

Tra Thomas had already dropped to 3rd on the depth chart after minicamp. The writing was on the wall.

The options are:

Brandyn Dombrowski - former UDFA who stepped in and played well at RT the last 7 games of the season after Clary went down. Better run-blocker than pass-blocker, but he didn't get dominated at any point last season by the pass-rush.

Tyronne Green - 2009 4th round pick, initially thought to be a guard or center. He is only 6'2, but apparently has a huge wingspan and quick feet. He was practicing with the 1st team this past week before he rolled his ankle.

Ryan Otterson - UDFA out of Oregon. He will play extensively at LT against the Cowboys, but if they have to rely on him in any fashion during the season, something is very wrong.
Dombrowski and Green seem like they'll do alright, but think about what happened to us last season...

We never won a game without Ryan Harris. He plays right tackle, but Clady is just as important. I might not be used to depth or something, but RT and LT absences still make my ears ring.

Chargerbomb
08-21-2010, 02:23 PM
Dombrowski and Green seem like they'll do alright, but think about what happened to us last season...

We never won a game without Ryan Harris. He plays right tackle, but Clady is just as important. I might not be used to depth or something, but RT and LT absences still make my ears ring.

The more apt comparison for us would be when the Chargers were forced to start Leander Jordan at LT due to injuries in 2005. That guy was horrible. The team was absolutely stacked, but Brees' play suffered down the stretch as he constantly had to look over his shoulder and rush his throws. They went 9-7 that year despite a truly awesome roster. The next year McNeill took over at LT, Tomlinson had his magical season running largely left behind McNeill and Deilman, and the team went 14-2 with an unstoppable running game.

Unfortunately McNeill hurt his neck the next season, and his run-blocking has never been the same. I look forward to a physical guy like Dombrowski paving the way for Ryan Mathews, but I'll just have to pray that he is capable of keeping Rivers from getting killed.

McSmashie
08-21-2010, 02:25 PM
Ill trade you Tyler Polumbus for some of your cheerleaders. :D

kishzilla
08-21-2010, 03:38 PM
Ill trade you Tyler Polumbus for some of your cheerleaders. :D

Pretty sure 2 Cheerleaders could block more effectively than one polumbus.

Chillez
08-21-2010, 04:48 PM
Had long good carrer I guess Tra Thomas didn't want to play more year.

Chargerbomb
08-22-2010, 12:40 PM
Dombrowski looked good again last night, lining up in front of Ware and Olshansky for most of the first half. He might've allowed a half-sack, but I never saw him really get beat. On 1 play Rivers had to step up because both Ware and Spencer were coming around, and they ended up smashing into each other. That's always fun to watch.

The run game has been awesome. I really believe that having Dombrowski in there is an immediate upgrade in run-blocking over McNeill. They have been able to run sweeps and off-tackle with brutal effectiveness so far, which speaks to both the line and the fact that Mathews can turn the corner, unlike LT last year.

So now Dombrowski has gone up against Julius Peppers and DeMarcus Ware. It's only preseason, but he has held his own, and he has shown physicality in the run game. I am quietly optimistic that Marcus McNeill is gonna get Wally Pipp'd.