Walter Football recently updated their two-round mock draft for the 2018 NFL Draft and while these things are absurdly speculative especially this far out it’s also the last weekend in May and if you are looking to get your NFL fix this time of year this is what we are left with doing.
They currently project the Chargers to select 21st overall in next year’s NFL Draft. That would be the lowest of the 12 teams predicted to make the playoffs, so you could say they’re expecting a bit of a bounce back from the 2015 and 2016 campaigns.
21) OT Martinas Rankin, Mississippi State
The Chargers signed Russell Okung this offseason, but he obviously can't be counted on to stay healthy. I'm sure the front office will realize this quickly, prompting them to select a left tackle who can shield Philip Rivers as he enters the twilight of his career.
Now, it is certainly reasonable to think that Okung could end up dealing with another injury-plagued season and even if he does not the Chargers have to act as though the next Okung injury is coming. Rankin is currently considered by many to be a solid prospect as an offensive tackle. This pick is not exciting, but you can definitely see the logic here.
53) S Donnie Miles, North Carolina
It was surprising to see the Chargers pass on Malik Hooker after he fell into their laps. An early safety could be in play in the 2018 NFL Draft.
It was a surprise to many national media types that the Chargers passed on Hooker, but those who follow the Chargers closely know that Tom Telesco has been disinclined to throw resources at the safety position for years now. A man that is comfortable starting Dwight Lowery and Jahleel Addae simply does not value the position that highly. It is possible that the Gus Bradley defense calls for a higher class of safety, however, and if that proves out over the course of the 2017 season, perhaps Telesco will pull the trigger in round two to bring in a guy that can actually play at a high level. Is Donnie Miles that guy? It is far too early to say, but the idea has merit.
It is insanely early to be thinking about the 2018 NFL Draft, but it is an interesting way of analyzing the 2017-18 Los Angeles Chargers roster. Are offensive tackle and safety really the biggest needs on this team? Do we expect them to be 11 months from now? What do you think?