If the Los Angeles Chargers think that they are one talented player away from a Super Bowl, how high could they trade up, and who might they target?
In this draft, a Derwin James-caliber player is not going to be available at a position of need at the 28th pick in the draft. With a trade up, perhaps a player close to the impact of James could be found.
The first question if contemplating such a move for the Chargers would be, “How high can we trade up?”
With draft value charts abound, one of the most commonly used for the new CBA is the Rich Hill trade value chart, so that is the one I used here.
Corrected new draft value chart, based on every draft trade since the new CBA after the 2011 draft. pic.twitter.com/ioBsC62xL4
— Rich Hill (@PP_Rich_Hill) April 23, 2017
The Chargers draft picks have the following values – 1st round: 36.42, 2nd round: 15.4, 3rd round: 7.66, 4th round: 3.22, 5th round: 1.44, 6th round: 0.68, 7th round: 0.26.
From this, we can arrive at two different simple potential possibilities for a trade up: in Scenario 1, the Chargers trade their 2019 first and second-round picks for a higher first-round pick. In Scenario 2 (more likely in your humble writer’s opinion), the Chargers trade their 2019 first-round pick and 2020 first-round pick for a higher first-round pick.
In Scenario 1, the coupled value of these picks is 51.82. This would be enough to move up to the New York Giants’ pick (number 17). While not a premium spot, a certain Pro-Bowler was drafted at this spot last year.
In Scenario 2, the value of the two picks is a little more uncertain due to the nature of the 2020 pick. However, the New Orleans Saints provided a good idea of what could be possible in this scenario.
Last year, the Saints traded their 2018 first and fifth-round picks along with their 2019 first-round pick to move up from the 27th pick to the 14th pick.
Thus, assuming the Chargers would not completely sell their future for a higher pick, the highest trade up spot for the Bolts appears to be somewhere between the 14th and 17th pick.
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In this range, there are a lot of players at positions of need (OT, DT) that are projected to come off the board including Christian Wilkins, Rashan Gary, Devin Bush, and Andre Dillard.
While these players are all interesting targets, I would expect the Chargers (and the conservative Tom Telesco) to only trade up if a great prospect takes a tumble.
Two names that I would love a trade up for in this range would be Ed Oliver and Jawaan Taylor. While both are typically mocked around spots 5-13, a slide down a few spots is unlikely but not outlandish.
Plus, the Chargers have already shown good interest in Oliver.
— Chargers Zone (@TheChargersZone) April 9, 2019
It would certainly be worth a trade up for either of these two players. Would it be worth a trade up for any of the other four previously mentioned players (Wilkins, Gary, Bush, and Dillard)?
It completely depends on the Chargers player evaluations and who they believe will be available at the 28th pick. I would not expect a move up unless one of the duo of Oliver and Taylor is available at pick 14 or later.
Which player(s) would you like the Chargers to trade up for in the draft?