Chargers Drafts Re-Visited: 2003
Pick: 2nd round, selection #14
Drayton Florence – CB Tuskegee
After playing primarily in the nickel and dime packages in his first two season, Florence earned a starting job in 2005. During his three years as a starter, he compiled 156 tackles, 33 passes defended and six interceptions. He was eventually traded to the Jacksonville Jaguars that would yield a pick that turned into running back Gartrell Johnson. After two years with the Jaguars, he departed and joined the Buffalo Bills, where he has been an effective defensive back for them for the past two years.
Pick: 2nd round, selection #30
Terrance Kiel – CB Texas A&M
Kiel started 8 of 16 games in his rookie campaign and earning the started Safety job. In 2004 Kiel started all 16 games and was second on the Chargers in tackles. In 2005 and 2006 Kiel started all 37 games he played in. Kiel was cut in 2007 and passed away in a car accident on July 4, 2008.
Pick: 3rd round, selection #16
Courtney Van Buren – OL Arkansas Pine Bluff
In 2003, Van Buren started in seven of the eight games he played in. He appeared in one game in 2004 and was cut after 2005, never to return to the NFL.
Pick: 4th round, selection #15
Matt Wilhelm – Ohio State
Matt was a Charger from 2003-2008. Most of that time he was used as a situational and special teams player. In 2007 Matt was handed the ILB starting position starting all 14 of the games he appeared in recording 97 tackles and 3 interceptions. After seeing a diminished role in 2008, Matt was cut. He was picked up by the San Francisco 49ers in 2009, but was used sparingly. After leaving the 49ers, he headed to the Green Bay Packers where he played as a reserve linebacker on the Super Bowl winning squad.
Pick: 5th round, selection #14
Mike Scifres – P Western Illinois
I am personally not a fan of drafting punters, but this guy is a gem. Scifres, still with the team, has been as much of a game changer as a punter can be. The teams starting punter since 2004, Scifres has been among the league’s ever year and it could be argued he was the best Chargers pick in this draft.
Pick: 6th round, selection #15
Hanik Milligan – CB Houston
Milligan was a special teams stand out for the team in 2004 and 2005, being named to the Pro Bowl team in 2005. Despite his Pro Bowl honor, he was released after the season and ended up signing with the Arizona Cardinals. After a disappointing season with the Cardinals and a short trip to play with the St. Louis Rams in 2007, Milligan’s NFL career was over.
Pick: 7th round, selection #15
Andrew Pinnock – HB South Carolina
Pinnock played with the Chargers from 2003-2007. Primarily a special teams player, he also played filled in as a fullback. He appeared in 42 games during his five years with the team. After leaving San Diego in 2007, he signed with the Denver Broncos in 2008 but never saw the field. There was no more NFL action for Pinnock after that.
After being named General Manager on April 22, 2003, this represented A.J. Smith’s first draft. The Chargers went into the draft with the 15th overall selection, the pick was traded to Philadelphia for the 30th and 62nd overall picks. The Chargers had released Strong Safety Rodney Harrison in February and decided to trade the 15th overall pick and pass on All-American USC Safety Troy Polamalu.