Jim Harbaugh praises Junior Colson: ‘He’s making all of the calls’

Early on in rookie minicamp, it seems that third-round draft pick Junior Colson is making quite the impression. Jim Harbaugh had a few takeaways from Colson’s first few days as a Charger:

It’s been great. [LB] Junior [Colson], he knows the defense so well. It’s such an incredible thing. I’m not saying he’s going to be wearing any dots or anything anytime soon — probably not the first year. He’s literally making all of the calls. He’s making all the linebacker calls. He’s making the DB calls right now. The safeties that are making calls are getting it mostly right. I’d give them an ‘A,’ but the ones that they miss on, Junior will make the call and correct the call for the safeties, which is awesome. In a meeting with the linebackers, [Linebackers Coach] NaVorro [Bowman] would ask a question and Junior would give the right answer. It finally got to the point, ‘Somebody other than Junior answer this next question.’ [laughter] It’s safe to say that he knows he’s on it. It’s a great thing for our team.

Based on how the veterans had been practicing before the draft and the arrival of the rookies, it seemed like Derwin James had pole position on being the green dot defensive signal caller. It’s important to note in Harbaugh’s quote that he did pour some water on Colson “wearing dots” in his rookie season. But Harbaugh’s quotes on Colson’s instincts make it seem his takeover of defensive responsibilities is a matter of when rather than if.

Colson’s chemistry and familiarity with defensive coordinator Jesse Minter is also hard to ignore. Back in March, Minter suggested he wanted to “maximize” James’ skillset without moving him around too much.

Ultimately, we probably won’t know who the green dot is until well into training camp. But it’s shaping up to be one of James or Colson. And Colson could have the responsibility sooner rather than later based on his early performance.

Story originally appeared on Chargers Wire