With Philip Rivers officially departing the Los Angeles Chargers to test free agency, the team looks to the future for Justin Herbert in this February 2020 mock draft.
Back in January, I did my first mock draft of 2020 for Bolt Beat, which you can find here. Before moving onto February, it’s interesting to see how much that mock changed over the last month.
First, from some scouting and analyst criticism, Andrew Thomas has plummeted from a top-five to ten pick to a late first-round selection. He was selected to the Chargers in last month’s mock with the sixth pick.
Some other changes include my fifth-round pick Thomas Graham Jr. deciding to return to Oregon and Leki Fotu going from a third-round projection to more of a fourth-round guy. It’s always interesting to see how draft stocks go up and down, and I’m sure when I do a mock in March, the NFL combine and interviews will change a lot for player rankings.
Completing the mock draft was done through The Draft Network’s mock draft machine. The main needs for the Chargers, in order of importance, included quarterback, offensive line, cornerback, running back, wide receiver, linebacker, tight end, and interior defensive line.
Round 1, Pick 6: Justin Herbert, QB, Oregon
A couple of things have changed since the first draft, specifically in reference to Herbert. His stock has inflated, as most top quarterback stocks do prior to the draft.
The big domino that officially fell was the announced departure of Philip Rivers. Not having Rivers has boosted the chances in my view that the Chargers will spend their top pick on a quarterback.
The front office can wax on about Tyrod Taylor as they please, but whatever the setup is, a draft or free-agent quarterback is on the horizon.
Justin Herbert has his flaws. The progressions do need improvement. However, there isn’t a strong likelihood that Herbert would need to do very much from the beginning. Plus, a Taylor-Herbert quarterback room might be exactly what Anthony Lynn wants. Lynn has let his philosophy on mobile quarterbacks been known before.
Herbert did get better every year at Oregon. There are some awesome clips and mental plays that show his mental processing being top-notch, even if the progressions leave something to be desired. He’s got the mobility and some awesome intangibles. The Chargers get their quarterback of the future at six.
— Brian Johannes (@Draft_Brian) February 16, 2020