Just who will the Los Angeles Chargers select with the No. 28 overall pick in the first round of the NFL draft? Will they even make a pick, or could they trade it?
We’ve all taken our crack at how the team will spend its first pick in the draft in the endless talk leading up to the selection process, which starts Thursday night.
The Chargers don’t have many pressing needs, but there is little question that the offensive and defensive lines need more depth, at the very least. There are some other spots where the team could add a prospect and there is still a large camp that believes the team still needs to find that future quarterback.
The question was posed to the writing staff here at Bolt Beat and on the eve of the draft, we present to you our picks for the Chargers’ first-round selection.
Alexander Insdorf: Coming off of a playoff season for the Chargers, 2019 will be their lowest draft position since 2007, where they picked 30th. There doesn’t really seem to be a consensus in terms of position the Chargers go after with this pick. In the last four mock drafts I’ve read, I’ve seen them take a CB, S, QB, and a G. If it were my choice, I’d lean towards selecting a DT, which is where I think (or maybe hope) the Chargers go with this pick. That narrows it down to guys like Dexter Lawrence, Christian Wilkins, Jeffery Simmons, or Jerry Tillery being left by the time the team selects. I think Dexter Lawrence will be the guy left by the time the team selects, and I think he’s a top 10 pick that falls to late in the first round because of his combine injury. The Chargers desperately need D-Line help, and whether they get a guy like Ndamukong Suh or not, Lawrence would be a terrific boost to the interior D-Line.
John Wozniak: Dexter Lawrence would be my choice as the Chargers first-round draft pick. The 2016 ACC Defensive Rookie of the Year would bolster the run defense. A low draft pick requires our GM to have several plans and permutations at the ready.
Scouts regard Lawrence as a 5-star recruit, he ran the 40 in 5.05 at this year ‘s combine. It’s difficult to see the former Clemson star falling to the 28th pick, however, there is nothing to suggest that Tom Telesco won’t be aggressive in the draft and trade up. Dexter’s lack of sacks in 2018 shouldn‘t deter the Bolts from drafting him.
The Bolts are in for a treat if this year ‘s draft pick is anywhere near as good as Derwin James. I’d be delighted if the Chargers drafted Lawrence with the 28th overall pick.
Andrew De Fazio: Dalton Risner. This selection is based off pure need as the Chargers offensive line deteriorated during the second half of the 2018 season. Rinser would be slated in at right tackle on the Chargers offensive line. Most scouts and analysts regard Risner as the fifth best tackle in the draft. With the major drop off after Risner in this year’s tackle class, it may be wise to draft Risner in the first round and fill out the rest of the team’s needs throughout rounds two through seven.
Risner displays average length and good athletic ability to play right tackle in the NFL. General Manager Tom Telesco mentioned in his pre-draft press conference that he admires versatile offensive lineman. Risner fits this billing due to his experience starting at center and right tackle.
Collin Larsen: Dexter Lawrence, Clemson: Defensive Tackle
Needing major upgrades with the offensive line, defensive tackle and linebacker spots, the Chargers should select Dexter Lawrence with the number 28 spot. He is a real blue chipper; he can fill the space up the middle, clogging the run game and occasionally rush the passer. He has big-time athleticism for being someone of his size that can translate into a perennial Pro-Bowler and be a big-time pro football player for years to come.
Tyler Gallagher: C Garrett Bradbury
Believe it or not, Dan Feeney had a lower grade from PFF than Sam Tevi last year, yet the coaches did not believe that Forrest Lamp was ready to take his spot. GM Tom Telesco may be inclined to surprise us with an interior lineman instead of a tackle, with the additional benefit that said interior lineman has experience at both guard and center, allowing him to start immediately at guard and potentially take over for Mike Pouncey after his contract expires this year.