When looking to draft for the Chargers, I was primarily concerned with drafting the best defensive player available. Even with Philip Rivers’ struggles last year, the San Diego offense was ranked fifth overall, according to Football Outsiders. While the offense could use some tweaks (an offensive lineman, a backup running back for when Ryan Mathews goes down this season and an extra wideout), the defense was absolutely horrendous at 29th overall (again, thank you, Football Outsiders). This team desperately needs help at pass rusher and could use some help from a safety to play across from Eric Weddle.
Bill Williamson: Yes, I can see it. I think the Chargers might be able to get a pass-rusher like Illinois’ Whitney Mercilus or Syracuse’s Chandler Jones in the 23-to-28 range and maybe grab another quality pick by trading down, which could help them move up on the second round or even late in the first round to address another need area and take a player like Notre Dame safety Harrison Smith. The Chargers are pretty creative and aggressive on draft day. I could see a move being made.
*The Chargers believe they can get something out of Jared Gaither that no one else has been able to get out of him in five seasons: consistent play. After Gaither joined the team late in the year and played at a high level for the Chargers for the last five games of the season, San Diego re-signed him to be their starting left tackle. In the past, Gaither has been considered a poor practice player who lacks passion for the game. Coach Norv Turner told me he is evaluating Gaither based on his experiences with him, and those are all good. He thinks Gaither will benefit from having a complete offseason and full camp in San Diego.
In my recent San Diego Chargers 7 round mock draft I had the Chargers selecting a small school WR from South Dakota State University, Dale Moss. Moss, a former basketball player, only played 1 year of football for SDSU but made a big impact. The 6’3″ 213lb WR pulled in 61 receptions for a team high 949 yards and 6 touchdowns.