Chargers reason No. 3: Who else steps up if they don’t?
Are the Chargers really going to try and stop Patrick Mahomes with Isaac Rochell at defensive end for years to come?
Not that Rochell is a bad player; actually, he made a few key plays when the Chargers beat the Chiefs last year. But it’s Joey Bosa, a player with the talent, motor, and brains most teams dream of having at defensive end. Unfortunately, there are no players next in line for the Chargers who could come close to filling his production.
Sure, they could draft another defensive end in the first round, but much risk accompanies that decision. Ingram, for as consistent as he is now, posted just six sacks in his first three seasons. The last defensive end the Chargers took in the first round: Larry English.
Chargers reason No. 2: They wouldn’t have drafted him if they didn’t plan to retain him in the first place
It’s one thing to draft a running back in the first round and then seemingly move on from him with other options at running back; it’s entirely different, however, to let a premier pass-rusher hit the open market after drafting him so high.
The Chargers were given the opportunity to have all but two players in the 2016 NFL Draft: Jared Goff and Carson Wentz. After that, the entire remaining pool of players were open for the Chargers to select. At No. 3, they made a surprising move and selected Bosa, a scenario not often reported by the media who followed the Chargers at the time.
This point is often overlooked by fans. Would Telesco really make Bosa the target at third overall if he had zero desire to extend him in the future, barring poor play or significant injuries? Not only is that ridiculous for most teams, but it would be out of character for this franchise in particular.
Sure, one can bring up Bosa’s contract dispute his rookie season. There’s no denying the Chargers handled that one poorly; however, there’s also no denying the growth of Telesco since then. Is it possible for the general manager to learn from his previous mistake? He’s become a more patient drafter, a more savvy free agent signer, and an even better selector of talent in the draft. Surely he’s learned something since 2016.