1-Man’s Opinion on Sports-Thursday. “CHARGERS–NFL DRAFT DAY”

Posted by on April 25th, 2024  •  0 Comments  • 





A fun time, a clean piece of paper, new leadership.

That’s what Chargers football is all about effecrtive at 5pm tonight, NFL draft night.

There’s Jim Harbaugh as head coach.  Ex Baltimore Ravens exec Joe Hortiz as GM

The Bolts have a high 1st round draft pick and an early 2nd round pick.

They have quarterback Justin Herbert, coming off 3-really good seasons.

But that’s all they have.

They have salary cap issues.  They have lost all their skill players.

They have holes in lots of places on defense.

So there are huge questions, what happens in the next couple of hours.

Do they stay in the 5th spot in the opening round?  Who do they take?

Do they take a trade offer, deal down, stockpile more picks, and who do they take?

Here’s a unique package of ideas courtesty of the ‘The Athletic’.


If the Chargers stay at No. 5 …
Marvin Harrison Jr., WR, Ohio State St.
Harrison possesses “dominant receiving traits,” according to Brugler — from his route-running to his hands to his size to his athleticism. The Chargers moved on from Mike Williams and Keenan Allen this offseason. Receiver is perhaps their most pressing need entering this draft. The big question for the Chargers: Will Harrison make it to No. 5?

Malik Nabers, WR, LSU
Nabers is the type of explosive-play threat the Chargers have been missing for years — a “gliding athlete with the acceleration to separate early or late in the route,” according to Brugler. Nabers is a fit for the same reasons Harrison is a fit, and he is the No. 3 prospect on Brugler’s big board.

Rome Odunze, WR, Washington
The top three receivers — Harrison, Nabers and Odunze — are all elite prospects and should be in the mix at No. 5 if the Chargers stay there. Odunze has “desirable measurables,” according to Brugler, at 6-foot-3, 220 pounds with 4.45 speed. He thrives in contested catch situations. Maybe my favorite stat from Brugler’s draft guide: 80.4 percent of Odunze’s catches went for a first down or touchdown last season. I moved Odunze from No. 4 to No. 3 for this final board. I see the receivers as the Chargers’ top three options in this draft.

If the Chargers want to draft an offensive tackle, a trade-down probably makes sense. But Joe Alt could be an option at No. 5. (Rob Kinnan / USA Today)
Joe Alt, OT, Notre Dame
I think the Chargers should be looking to trade down if they are intent on coming away with an offensive lineman from the first round. But if they choose to take a tackle at No. 5, Alt could be the top consideration. He is the No. 5 player in Brugler’s top 300. Alt has rare athleticism for his frame — over 6-foot-8 and 321 pounds. He is not a physically dominant player, and his anchor “tends to be gradual,” as Brugler writes. Still, Alt clearly understands angles and finds ways to be effective as a run blocker and pass protector.

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If the Chargers trade down …
Troy Fautanu, OL, Washington
Fautanu is Brugler’s No. 9 prospect. He played predominantly left tackle at Washington. But Fautanu has some game experience at left guard, and Brugler says “he offers legitimate five-position potential at the next level.” Fautanu has the frame and talent to remain at tackle. He is an incredibly smooth athlete at 317 pounds. Brugler writes that Fautanu models his game after Chargers left tackle Rashawn Slater.

Taliese Fuaga, OL, Oregon State
Fuaga is one of my favorite players in the draft. Harbaugh and Joe Hortiz want to instill a physical, violent, tough mentality with their team. Fuaga embodies that with his play. “The pop in his hands will send defenders flying in the opposite direction,” writes Brugler. Fuaga could remain at tackle. He could be better suited kicking inside to guard. The Chargers could use competition at both right guard and right tackle. Fuaga is a fit at either spot.

Brock Bowers, TE, Georgia
I do not think Bowers should be a consideration at No. 5 for the Chargers. If they move down, he should be firmly on the table. The Chargers signed two tight ends in free agency in Will Dissly and Hayden Hurst. I think that only enhances Bowers’ potential fit with the Chargers, as he would be free to play all over the formation. “Bowers is an explosive pass catcher who creates mismatches all over the field with speed, ball skills and competitive edge,” Brugler writes. He would be a weapon for Justin Herbert in the passing game. Bowers also has the speed to be used as a ball carrier on jet sweeps.

Terrion Arnold, CB, Alabama
Arnold is Brugler’s top-ranked cornerback. The Chargers are thin at that position, and they need help inside and outside. Arnold can do both. I like his awareness and instincts in coverage. “Opens his hips easily to carry his athleticism in any direction,” writes Brugler.

Quinyon Mitchell, CB, Toledo
Mitchell is just behind Arnold in Brugler’s top 300. He has the size-speed combo defensive coordinator Jesse Minter said he is looking for in an outside corner. Mitchell is over 6 feet and ran a 4.33 at the combine. He also had 44 passes defended in his final two college seasons.

Olu Fashanu, OT, Penn State
Along with Fautanu and Fuaga, Fashanu is part of a big group of offensive linemen who could make sense for the Chargers in a trade-down. He started 21 games at left tackle for the Nittany Lions over three seasons. “Fashanu is a work in progress as a run blocker but above average in pass protection, because of his body quickness, anchor versus power and attention to detail,” writes Brugler.

JC Latham, OT, Alabama
Latham is intriguing in part because he played exclusively right tackle in college, starting 27 games there over the past two seasons. He is almost 6-foot-6 and 342 pounds. “Arguably the strongest player in this draft class,” according to Brugler. The Chargers seem set on their left side with Slater at tackle and Zion Johnson at guard. The right side is in more flux. Jamaree Salyer did not transition very smoothly to guard in 2023 after playing left tackle in place of the injured Slater in 2022. Right tackle Trey Pipkins III regressed in 2023 — though he has put starter-level play on tape at times in the past two seasons. Bringing in a player with right-side experience makes sense for the Chargers’ plans.

Amarius Mims, OT, Georgia
Mims is an athletic specimen. He is almost 6-foot-8 and 340 pounds with 36-inch arms, but he ran a 5.07 40 at the combine and, according to MockDraftable, ranked in the 85th percentile in the broad jump. The tape is impressive. The only problem is there just is not much of it. Mims only made eight starts in his Georgia career. All eight came at right tackle. “Though there is projection involved with his draft grade, his best football is ahead of him, and he has the talent to become a long-term starter,” Brugler writes.

If the Chargers pass on a top receiver like Malik Nabers (No. 8) with the No. 5 pick, could they target Brian Thomas Jr. (No. 11) after a trade-down? (Petre Thomas / USA Today)
Brian Thomas Jr., WR, LSU
Trading down from No. 5 only to take a receiver later in the first would be a bit of a head-scratcher. Nonetheless, Thomas has exceptional long speed and led the FBS in touchdown receptions last season with 17. “If his route efficiency catches up with his natural talent, he will be a dangerous weapon in the NFL,” Brugler writes. “He projects as a quality NFL starter with the upside of Tee Higgins.”

Byron Murphy II, DT, Texas
Interior defensive line is an underrated need for the Chargers. The possibility of pairing a plus interior rusher with the Chargers’ elite group of edge rushers is alluring. Murphy led all FBS interior linemen in pass rush win rate in 2023, according to Brugler. There will likely be other more important positions to address. But Murphy is an option in this range of the first round.


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