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Drafted Charger “Extremely Surprised” By Pick

Team not afraid to reach for physical, productive Mouton

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    NEWSLETTERS

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    SOUTH BEND, IN - SEPTEMBER 11: Jonas Mouton of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish of the Michigan Wolverines at Notre Dame Stadium on September 11, 2010 in South Bend, Indiana.

    Didn't expect the Chargers to draft Jonas Mouton in the second round Friday?

    Take a number and get in line — behind Mouton.

    Minutes after being selected, the Michigan linebacker admitted he was caught off-guard when the Chargers selected him with the No. 61 overall pick, part of a busy draft day that netted the team three defensive players and San Diego State wide receiver Vincent Brown.

    “I was very surprised,” said Mouton, who was projected to last as late as the fifth round. “I was thinking somewhere, at the earliest, around the third (round). The second didn't really cross my mind, just from everything I was hearing, so I was extremely surprised.”

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    Jimmy Raye, team director of player personnel, said he felt Mouton flew under the radar, in part due to Michigan's struggles as a team.

    Mouton, a Los Angeles native, will primarily play at inside Mike linebacker for the Chargers after seeing time at both inside and outside in Ann Arbor.

    Free agents Stephen Cooper and Kevin Burnett started for the Chargers at inside linebacker last year, and 2010 rookie linebacker Donald Butler is coming off a torn Achilles' suffered in training camp.

    “Our new special teams coach (Rich Bisaccia) loves him,” Raye said of Mouton. “The presence he brings, the edge he brings, the teams he's played in college — all that stuff we feel can translate at this level.”

    Coach Norv Turner said Mouton, 23, is capable of contributing on first down and in the nickel package while serving as an “outstanding” special teams player.

    Mouton, who is 6-foot-2 and 240 pounds, led the Big 10 Conference with 117 tackles as a fifth-year senior.

    “I think he's got a knack for playing,” Turner said. “He's a very good tackler. He's very, very productive. He has an attitude about him.”

    And on Friday, some surprise.