With Mike Williams currently without a contract past the 2021 season, it’s only right to consider the Chargers may be without his services during this upcoming season. If that ends up being the case, they’ll need to find some way to replace his dynamic play-making ability.
If Mike Williams leaves — and I believe it is possible, although the team has a ton of cap room — then the team will need to replace him,” says Edwards. “Olave is a reliable outlet who carries himself like a professional. Justin Herbert would have one of the most trustworthy tandems in the league. I could also see Los Angeles trying to upgrade its run defense with Georgia linebacker Nakobe Dean or Georgia defensive tackle Devonte Wyatt.
At 6’1 and 188 pounds, Olave is built quite different from the 6’4, 220-pound Williams. And just like their frames are quite contrasting, so are their styles of play.
Olave is arguably the best route-runner in the entire draft class and can win in a much wider range of situations than Williams. Be it in the short, intermediate, or deep parts of the field, Olave knows how to set up his defender and win the leverage battle. In the clips below, Olave has a knack for targeting a cornerback’s blind spots which is a quick way to get a defender to freak out and lose their composure. He’s got a plan every time he runs a route and that’s an incredible level of preparation for any player.
All in on Chris Olave for the #Patriots if he falls to them at 21. He's the best route-runner in the class. Olave is excellent at selling vertical stems and getting DBs to respect his ability to go deep, then snaps routes off with great precision. No wasted moves, no drifting. pic.twitter.com/13RrnKHqRY— Evan Lazar (@ezlazar) January 24, 2022
In his four years with the Buckeyes, Olave has compiled 2,702 receiving yards on 175 receptions and a whopping 35 touchdowns. In both the 2019 and 2021 seasons, Olave went for double-digit touchdowns, including a career-high 13 this past season. His performance as a senior earned him First-Team All-Big Ten honors by the coaches and second team honors by the Associated Press.
Chris Olave in the Big Ten since 2018:— PFF Draft (@PFF_College) January 25, 2022
♨️ 2,709 receiving yards (3rd)
♨️ 35 receiving TDs yards (1st) pic.twitter.com/yzcXjc7BIi
As of right, of the Chargers’ top four receivers, only Keenan Allen and Josh Palmer are under contract heading into next season. Jalen Guyton is a restricted free agent and could be a cheap re-sign if the team chooses to tender him. But if neither Guyton or Williams returns in 2022, the Chargers will most certainly have to find another receiver or two via the draft or free agency. With tons of cap space comes a lot of excitement and potential. Here’s to hoping the team makes all the right moves over the coming months.
In the comments, let me know what you all think of this selection and whether or not you’d be content with Olave as their first-round pick. Would you consider any receiver in the first or is it trench player or bust on day one?