Bleacher Report’s Brent Sobleski wasted no time in publishing a new 2021 mock just hours following the end of Super Bowl LV and he’s got the Chargers going in a different direction than you’d probably expect. However, the position is still an important one, despite not being at the tope of the priority list for many in the fan base.
Sobleski has the Bolts taking a shot on Kwity Paye, an extremely explosive pass-rusher from Michigan. With top offensive tackles Penei Sewell and Rashawn Slater off the board, he believes that Paye would be the most-impactful selection for the Chargers in the first. After all, it’s widely-believed that the pass-rush is the best way to throw off opposing offenses while also being extremely synergistic with the secondary.
Here’s what Sobleski had to say about the pick:
“Offensive tackle is the obvious choice here to protect Justin Herbert’s blind side, but with Oregon’s Penei Sewell and Northwestern’s Rashawn Slater already off the board, the opportunity to select the class’ best pure edge-defender makes more sense, especially with the depth found in this year’s tackle class.”
“With Melvin Ingram III scheduled to hit free agency, a running mate for Joey Bosa could make Brandon Staley’s new defense potent from day one. Michigan’s Kwity Paye couldn’t be blocked during the 2020 campaign. To take that a step further since a groin injury derailed Paye’s final season, the two-time All-Big Ten selection registered three or more pressures in each of the last eight games he played, per Pro Football Focus.”
“Relentless defensive bookends are the perfect way to build an identity.”
Paye stands at an extremely lean 271 pounds on his 6’4 frame. He has some of the best bend among all pass-rushers in this year’s class while possessing the size that could allow him to play multiple positions up front. For comparison, Paye is much closer to Joey Bosa (6’5, 280 pounds) than he is to Ingram (6’2, 240 pounds). The Chargers will finally have a chance to pair Bosa with another exceptional rusher who actually possesses ideal size to both rush the passer and stop the run.
I like this pick, but only if the top tackles aren’t there at No. 13. Otherwise, it’s still offensive line all the way for me, personally.