Chargers had to like Lane Johnson effort

February, 23, 2013
2/23/13
2:15
PM ET
INDIANAPOLIS -- Lane Johnson did nothing Saturday to keep his name out of the mix to be the San Diego Chargers’ selection with the No. 11 overall draft pick.

As expected, the Oklahoma left tackle was blazing fast in the 40-yard dash at the NFL scouting combine. Johnson, a 6-foot-6, 303-pound former quarterback, ran a 4.72 40-yard dash. It was the second-fastest time for an offensive lineman Saturday behind a 4.71 posting by Terron Armstead of Arkansas-Pine Bluff. The previous combine record by an offensive lineman was 4.84.

Johnson is considered a much higher prospect than Armstead. While he is still a bit raw, Johnson is considered a sure first-round pick. He helped his cause with a great Senior Bowl week and Saturday’s performance helped him greatly.

He is probably the third-best left tackle prospect behind Texas A&M’s Luke Joeckel and Central Michigan’s Eric Fisher. Joeckel is considered a top-5 pick and Fisher may be a top-10 pick.

Left tackle is the Chargers’ greatest need. If the Chargers don’t address the position in free agency (it’s a strong group), I’d think their top two choices at No. 11 will be either Fisher or Johnson.

So, San Diego had to be pleased with Johnson’s efforts Saturday.

Bill Williamson | email

ESPN Oakland Raiders reporter

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