Round 2, Pick 37: LB Patrick Queen, LSU
When Patrick Queen fell a little later than expected in this mock, there was no choice but to take him. In the real draft, Queen probably has a range of falling somewhere between picks 25 and 40. If he does slip, the Chargers should forgo some more important positional needs for the best player available here.
For Chargers fans hoping for Simmons like myself, he may be the next best thing. He’s great in pass coverage. He has the elite athleticism and movement of a safety in the body of a linebacker. The hold up for teams on Queen is the ability to stop the run. There was some real improvement in that area from his sophomore to junior seasons though.
In terms of comparisons, Queen reminds me quite a bit of Roquan Smith. The outside and sideline to sideline speed are too good to pass up. Both are effective second-level players as well.
Queen isn’t as polished as Smith was coming out of college, but if he improves against the run, he has the ability to get there. His coverage grade of 79.7 by PFF was phenomenal amongst college linebackers.
Round 3, Pick 71: WR Michael Pittman Jr., USC
There’s probably a lot of people about to yell at me for not going offensive line here. It’s understandable, but the Chargers may be in a position where the need at receiver has usurped the need for an offensive tackle.
The Chargers were able to get Bulaga in free agency as previously mentioned. They still haven’t gotten a real third wide receiver. Michael Pittman Jr. can be that receiver for the Chargers.
When starting the mock draft process back in January, one of the criticisms that I had of Pittman was speed. At the time, it seemed like drafting Pittman would basically just be a second Mike Williams.
However, after a combination of his combine performance and watching more film, speed isn’t really a limitation when it comes to Pittman. He put up a 4.52 40 yard dash, which doesn’t sound impressive, but his speed score tells the full picture. When considering Pittman’s height and weight, he ranked in the 93rd percentile of 40 times.
At the next level, four key skills are somewhat necessary for receivers. Those skills are jump balls, fighting through contact, separation, and speed. My confidence in Pittman’s speed and separation has gone up, so there are no real red flags for me. His use of his hands-on routes is also nice.
This right here is great stuff from Michael Pittman. He does a great job of fighting through contact and swatting down the DBs hands. Then at the catch point, he fires his hands out late so the DB can't play the catch point. pic.twitter.com/5PyhGpGSqu
— Nick Farabaugh (@FarabaughFB) April 3, 2020