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Andrew Gachkar
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Gachkar with the San Diego Chargers
Linebacker
Personal information
Date of birth: (1988-11-04) November 4, 1988 (age 31)
Place of birth: Overland Park, Kansas
Career information
College: Missouri
NFL Draft: 2011 / Round: 7 / Pick: 234
No regular season or postseason appearances
Career history
* San Diego Chargers ( 2011 2014)
Career highlights and awards
* Honorable-mention All-Big 12 (2010)
Career NFL statistics as of 2017
Total tackles     149
Sacks     2.5
Forced fumbles     1
Fumble recoveries     1
Interceptions     0
Defensive touchdowns     1
Stats at pro-football-reference.com

Andrew Gachkar (born November 4, 1988) is an American football linebacker who is currently a free agent. He was drafted by the San Diego Chargers in the seventh round of the 2011 NFL Draft. He played college football at the University of Missouri.

Early yearsEdit

Gachkar grew up in Overland Park, Kansas and attended Blue Valley West High School. As a junior, he registered 83 tackles, 5 sacks, 2 interceptions (one returned for a touchdown) and 2 forced fumbles. In his last year, he was a two-way player at both running back and linebacker.

College careerEdit

Gachkar, rated the number 12 overall prospect in the state of Kansas, chose to play collegiately at the University of Missouri. He was a two-year starter for the Tigers.

In 2009, he started 13 games at strongside linebacker and had 80 tackles (second on the team). The next year, he was moved to weakside linebacker to replace All-American Sean Weatherspoon, finishing with 84 tackles.[1]

Professional careerEdit

San Diego ChargersEdit

Gachkar was selected by the San Diego Chargers in the seventh round (234th overall) of the 2011 NFL Draft.[2] On July 28, 2011, he was signed to a four-year deal with the Chargers. As a rookie, he played mainly on special teams and posted 12 special teams tackles (second on the team).

He became a valuable special teams player, while also being a solid reserve linebacker. In 2012, he recorded 13 tackles (2 for loss), one sack and eight special teams tackles. The next season, he started 3 games, making 25 tackles (one for loss) and 8 special teams tackles.

In 2014, he received more playing time due to injuries and defensive coordinator John Pagano's rotations at linebacker. He registered 5 starts, 46 tackles (6 for loss), 16 special teams tackles and also scored his first NFL touchdown against the St. Louis Rams on a fumble recovery.

Dallas CowboysEdit

On March 15, 2015, he signed with the Dallas Cowboys a two-year, $5.5 million contract, reuniting with former Chargers special teams coordinator Rich Bisaccia.[3] As a reserve linebacker, he showed the ability to play all three positions and made Jasper Brinkley expendable.[4] He started against the New Orleans Saints and posted 6 tackles. In the eighth game of the season against the Philadelphia Eagles, he saw extended time in place of Sean Lee who was out with a concussion, while tallying 4 tackles (one for loss). He played in every game, registering 8 special teams tackles (tied for fourth on the team) and 13 defensive tackles.[5]

In 2016, he remained a core special teams player and tied for fourth on special teams tackles (7). In the season finale against the Philadelphia Eagles, the Cowboys rested players for the playoffs and Gachkar saw extended playing time, posting 5 tackles (one for loss), 2 quarterback pressures and a half-sack. He wasn't re-signed after the season.[6]

Jacksonville JaguarsEdit

On August 13, 2017, Gachkar signed with the Jacksonville Jaguars.[7] He was released on September 2, 2017.[8]

Carolina PanthersEdit

On October 17, 2017, Gachkar signed with the Carolina Panthers.[9]

Personal lifeEdit

Gachkar overcame a life-threatening ailment to even be able to play football. In 2007, after his freshman year at Missouri, he was diagnosed with Thoracic Outlet Syndrome. He had developed a blood clot because his collarbone and rib cage were too close together to allow proper blood flow through his veins. As a result, he underwent major surgery to remove one of his ribs, and a second surgery after another clot developed. Gachkar spent more than 20 hours in surgery and nearly a month in the hospital and he lost 30 pounds. The surgeries initially put his football future in doubt, but Gachkar was diligent in his rehabilitation and he made it back for the 2008 season without missing a game.[10]

Gachkar married Lauren Nuckolls, a former Missouri Tiger volleyball player and his high school sweetheart, on March 23, 2013.

ReferencesEdit

  1. "Chargers draft Andrew Gachkar of Blue Valley West and Missouri in seventh round". http://www.kansas.com/latest-news/article1062849.html. Retrieved February 19, 2016.
  2. "2011 NFL Draft Listing" (in en). https://www.pro-football-reference.com/years/2011/draft.htm.
  3. Sessler, Marc (March 15, 2015). "Dallas Cowboys land linebacker Andrew Gachkar". NFL.com. http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000479114/article/dallas-cowboys-land-linebacker-andrew-gachkar. Retrieved March 15, 2015.
  4. "Cowboys turn attention to Andrew Gachkar at middle linebacker". http://www.espn.com/blog/dallas-cowboys/post/_/id/4744785/cowboys-turn-attention-to-andrew-gachkar-at-middle-linebacker. Retrieved February 19, 2017.
  5. "Roster Rundown: Gachkar Provided Solid LB Depth, Special Teams Play". http://www.dallascowboys.com/news/2016/02/17/roster-rundown-gachkar-provided-solid-lb-depth-special-teams-play. Retrieved February 19, 2016.
  6. "Free Agent Overview: Gachkar Played Special Teams, Versatile LB Role Again". http://www.dallascowboys.com/news/2017/02/08/free-agent-overview-gachkar-played-special-teams-versatile-lb-role-again. Retrieved February 19, 2017.
  7. Oehser, John (August 13, 2017). "Jaguars Sign Linebacker Andrew Gachkar". http://www.jaguars.com/news/article-JaguarsNews/Jaguars-Sign-Linebacker-Andrew-Gachkar/baa711bf-e0a4-4163-9e02-85de71ba0d0a.
  8. Oehser, John (September 2, 2017). "Jaguars reduce active roster to 53 players". Archived from the original on September 5, 2017. https://web.archive.org/web/20170905032258/http://www.jaguars.com/news/article-JaguarsNews/Jaguars-reduce-active-roster-to-53-players/11928d4a-71bb-4c27-af08-70f67c3242e8.
  9. Henson, Max (October 17, 2017). "Panthers sign LB Andrew Gachkar, waive QB Brad Kaaya". http://www.panthers.com/news/article-2/Panthers-sign-LB-Andrew-Gachkar-waive-QB-Brad-Kaaya/82760890-fb40-4877-87aa-4767971f0a6a.
  10. "Gachkar overcomes challenges to lead Missouri football team". http://www.columbiamissourian.com/sports/tiger-kickoff-gachkar-overcomes-challenges-to-lead-missouri-football-team/article_dcd65c2f-990c-5887-992f-ab80cf87470d.html. Retrieved February 19, 2016.

External linksEdit

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