Ryan Mathews fails conditioning test

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I don’t think this is what the San Diego Chargers had in mind when they traded up 16 spots in the first round of the 2009 draft to select Fresno State running back Ryan Mathews.

Ryan MathewsICONRyan Mathews needs to step it up in 2011.

On the heels of a disappointing rookie campaign that included only nine starts, 678 rushing yards and a high ankle sprain, second-year running back Ryan Mathews currently looks like he spent his offseason focused on anything but the game of football.

Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune reports that Mathews failed a conditioning test last Wednesday.

“My cardio is real good; I don’t get tired,” Mathews told Acee. “It’s the speed work. I haven’t been doing much speed work like that. There’s a couple things I probably should have done differently in the offseason, conditioning my legs.”

While there’s still plenty of time for Mathews to get into game shape, keep in mind that the Bolts used a sixth-round pick on Connecticut running back Jordan Todman this past April and still have touchdown-machine Mike Tolbert on the roster as well.

Meaning if Mathews proves to be ineffective as the starting running back, the team could be quick to make a change.

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