With the sixth pick, the LA Chargers select…
Okudah is a lock to the Lions as of now, but things can change. If the Lions were to take Simmons instead, it’s very feasible he could fall to six. Like with Simmons at six, the Chargers have to at least consider the possibility of what Okudah can bring to the defense before passing on him.
Okudah is probably the best cornerback prospect since Patrick Peterson in 2011. He’s got great physicality to stay with receivers in intermediate routes and great speed to cover deep routes. His use of boundaries in his pass defense, as well as his quick feet, make him difficult to throw on. He’s a suffocating presence for opposing offenses.
The Chargers don’t necessarily need a cornerback. At the same time, they signed Chris Harris to play the slot as opposed to the second spot opposite Casey Hayward. Michael Davis will likely man that spot this year, but it’s hard to say that there isn’t some reasonable skepticism about trying that experiment again. Davis still has problems with tackling and pass interference penalties.
Brandon Facyson is an OK tackler, but he has pretty significant problems with keeping up in coverage. Okudah may not fill one of the team’s more pressing needs, but if he’s available at six, he’s the best player available. The pick would add to a stacked secondary that the Chargers have already given a significant boost this year. Plus, it’s a pretty thin cornerback class outside of the first few rounds.
When it comes down to it, there’s rationale for any of these picks as of now. The Chargers have a need at quarterback that could be filled by Tagovailoa, Herbert, or Love. Tagovailoa is the cream of the crop amongst quarterbacks. Herbert and Love could be solid starters eventually, but I wouldn’t be too keen on their selections at first.
Okudah and Simmons may not fill the most crucial needs for the team, but they scream best player available. Becton, amongst some of the other possible tackles, would bolster offensive line depth.