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The Los Angeles Chargers Scored Big Time in the Draft

After letting instant reaction emotions die down, I believe the Chargers quietly put together a very nice draft. Here’s why...

NFL: Los Angeles Chargers-Mike Williams Press Conference Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports

If you haven’t taken a look at my dissection of the Chargers first round pick, and why they did what they had to do, take a look here. If you don’t have time to read another article, here’s the gist: Mike Williams may have been a bit of a reach as far as most teams were concerned, but considering he was #1 on their board when they picked, they got the best player available. Hard to argue with that.

In the 2nd and 3rd rounds, the Chargers grabbed a guy who they had a 1st round grade on (Forrest Lamp), and their 2nd favorite player (Dan Feeney) for the 38th pick, should Lamp have not been available. This shows the Chargers went best player available not only in the first round, but also in the 2nd and third rounds. Tom Telesco and company showed immense patience to sit at 38 and also not move in the 3rd round to wait for these great talents to fall to them. It could have ended up horribly for the Chargers had Lamp or Feeney not fallen (and they did try to trade up), but it ended up working out in the Chargers favor in a BIG way.

With Lamp, the Chargers get a versatile player on the line. He played as Western Kentucky’s Left Tackle during his time there, but due to his short arms, projects to be a Guard at the NFL level. Many pundits and scouts say he is also capable of playing Center at a high level, but I say stick him where he’s comfortable - at tackle. Pro Football Focus rated him as a top 5 offensive tackle in college football every year for the last three years. He moves very well, and tested great at the combine, finishing as one of the top performers in the 40 yard dash (5 seconds flat), the bench press (34 reps), Broad Jump (111 inches), and the three cone drill (7.55 inches). The Chargers got someone who has the athleticism, the strength, and the smarts to come in day one and be a very good Guard for the Chargers.

With Dan Feeney, the Chargers get a leader (two-time team captain at Indiana), a four year starter coming out of college, and a very good lineman in space. He projects to be more of a zone guard due to his lower body strength “deficiencies.” As far as I’m concerned, he’s not going to be the guy opening up consistent holes for Melvin to run through, but he will block his guy, and block his guy well, at least giving Melvin Gordon a chance to not get hit in the backfield. I don’t know if he will be a fantastic guard, but he will be a very solid starter for the Chargers for the foreseeable future. In 3 rounds, the Chargers effectively grabbed a reliable, big receiver, and overhauled their offensive line, hopefully bringing it out of mediocrity. These three rounds made the Chargers an instant “A,” in my book, and even if the Chargers drafted me to play cornerback for them in the fourth round, it would have still been an A.

In the 4th round, the Chargers grabbed Rayshawn Jenkins, who is a thumper in the secondary, but is ultimately a project. His instincts are okay, but he is ultimately a pretty good athlete, and will probably stick to mostly special teams at first. Kind of a questionable pick, as he is pretty similar to Jahleel Addae, but I guess two Addae’s are better than one?

Desmond King in the 5th round was an absolute steal. The Chargers grabbed a safety with excellent instincts, a great track record in reliability, and a guy who is just always in the right place at the right time. While he is physically not a great specimen with top end speed, he has fluid hips, and could make a very good nickel corner or safety in the NFL. Projected to go in the 3rd round, and the Chargers picked him up in the fifth? A+ if you ask me.

Sam Tevi is another questionable pick and honestly will probably not stick with the team for very long. He doesn’t seem to be particularly good at any one thing. He’s not very fast, he’s not very strong. I don’t really understand the pick.

Isaac Rochell is a depth pick with leadership experience. He is mainly a run blocker, and is too small to play as a D-tackle in the league. He earned his way into the draft as a hard worker, with a good motor and as a great guy. Let’s hope he can accumulate some pass rushing tools to stick with the Chargers.

So overall, the Chargers started the draft with a bang, drafting three starters back to back to back. I am quickly becoming more excited about the Mike Williams pick, as he plays well, seems like a great dude, and is determined to make a mark in this world (see: potential career ending neck injury). They picked up a couple projects and a guy who has potential as a safety and nickel CB in the league. Overall, the Chargers cooled off some on day 3, but their draft was very much a huge win for the organization. Bolt up!