Despite a preseason full of success, the Bolts may have found a diamond in the rough in their defensive backfield.
Desmond King was drafted by the Los Angeles Chargers with the 151st pick in the 2017 NFL draft. Since then he has definitely been a fan favorite. It’s not often you can get a potential highly talented player in the fifth round who looks as if he can fill hole on the defense sooner rather than later.
King has been the one consistent stand out during this offseason, but we have often noticed that training camp and practice success can only go so far. Your talent is showed when the lights and cameras are bright on Sunday’s during the season. Is the young rookie ready for primetime?
So far, it looks King should be a starter.King played his first preseason game against the Seattle Seahawks and he showed amazing promise at that hybrid safety position. He demonstrated tremendous instincts, with the ability to locate the football and perform sound textbook tackles. He even added his first NFL interception.
King performed so well he was presented the “game ball” by Pro Football Focus. He was all over the field against a quality opponent in the Seahawks. He allowed a grand total of one yard on two targets. He even showed some great pass rushing pursuits as a defensive back by getting a sack on the opposing quarterback. His overall grade was an 85.9 for the duration of the game, which is pretty impressive for the rookie’s first appearance.
Even though it’s one game, the Iowa product showed great potential and deserves an opportunity to start. Jason Verret and Casey Hayward are already the cornerstones of the Chargers defensive backfield as long as they stay healthy. But King could add versatility as the nickel corner or play safety if he needed in some packages. The Chargers are prone to getting an injury, so King would be a great safety blanket if a starter gets sidelined.
King should get more playing time as the preseason ends and the regular season begins. How long until he starts remains a huge question. It is up to the coaches to pull the plug on that decision. But as of now look for a King to control what he can control which is his outstanding play on the field. Even though Chargers have lost both preseason games, King seems to be a huge bright spot for the Bolts future.