Jerry Tillery Jersey

The Chargers expect first-round pick Jerry Tillery to deliver some notable moments this season.

Not even one minute into his official tenure with the team Friday, the defensive lineman provided the first.

He also allowed everyone to exhale with a laugh, the sort of thing that can ease any formal introduction.

After graciously thanking the “Spanos family” and “Mr. Telesco,” Tillery made a reference to “Coach Swann.”

He also allowed everyone to exhale with a laugh, the sort of thing that can ease any formal introduction.

After graciously thanking the “Spanos family” and “Mr. Telesco,” Tillery made a reference to “Coach Swann.”

Toward the back of the room, head coach Anthony Lynn smiled.

“First off, I’m coach Lynn, not Lynn Swann,” Lynn said he told Tillery afterward. “You beat Lynn Swann this year.”

Then, speaking to the media, Lynn added, “I told him he’s going to have to make it up to me.”

Tillery should have plenty of chances to do just that, the Chargers projecting their latest top pick to be an immediate contributor along the defensive front.

A starter for most of his four seasons at Notre Dame, Tillery did beat Swann in 2018 when the Fighting Irish topped USC 24-17 at the Coliseum in November. Swann is the Trojans’ athletic director.

Tillery sacked USC’s JT Daniels that night, one of a team-leading eight Tillery had last season as Notre Dame rode its defense to an undefeated regular season and a spot in college football’s playoffs.

Chargers general manager Tom Telesco said Tillery’s size — 6-foot-7, 295 pounds — combined with his athletic ability made him the obvious choice when it came time to pick 28th Thursday.

Lynn said Tillery is a candidate to play three downs, and both inside and outside, although the Chargers are interested in him primarily as a tackle. He also figures to be used on special teams.

What the Chargers really would like from Tillery is an inside pass rush that could tighten the pocket and provide support for Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram coming off the edges.

“For a man his size and his capabilities, he has a lot of versatility,” Lynn said. “We just love his upside. He had some games this year where he was pretty much unblockable.”

Tillery, 22, enrolled early at Notre Dame after a stellar high school career in Louisiana. He graduated last May with a degree in economics.

He called playing in the NFL “the opportunity of a lifetime” and for the Chargers his “dream job.”

Tillery said he has spoken to Lynn about his potential role in 2019 and promised, “It’s going to be good.”

When a reporter noted that Tillery’s versatility is a strength, he deadpanned, “I would agree with you.” Asked about playing in Southern California as opposed to a colder climate, Tillery answered, “I’m in favor of it.”

This is a well-rounded, well-educated draft pick, the Chargers adding personality to a locker room that Telesco and Lynn both have credited for featuring great chemistry.

One of Tillery’s teammates at Notre Dame was defensive lineman Isaac Rochell, who is entering his third season with the Chargers. Rochell said he has no doubt that Tillery will fit in.

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