Prediction #4: The LA Chargers find a valuable running back in the sixth or seventh round.
The Chargers’ seventh round in the 2018 draft resulted in Justin Jackson, who’s been a key contributor and is due for a bigger role this year. Austin Ekeler has been extended for more four more years. While both are great in their roles, it wouldn’t surprise me to see the Chargers go after a more powerful back in the last two rounds of the draft.
Ekeler and Jackson have been terrific in space, but they’ve been just OK in the red zone. Ekeler has a tendency to fumble on the goal line, while Jackson just hasn’t gotten many attempts. With no Melvin Gordon to power touchdowns through, it makes sense to go for a depth pick late.
Some like AJ Dillon, but the pick would be a bit too high for my taste. Dillon is going to go in the fourth or fifth round, and it wouldn’t surprise me if he went earlier. About a week ago, the Chargers met with Darrynton Evans, but he’s a bit undersized to be able to supplement Ekeler and Jackson.
Patrick Taylor Jr. would be a nice pick up for the Chargers. At 6’1″ and 217 pounds, he’s got decent enough size. On his college tape, he’s got good mobility and is able to break tackles on a pretty regular basis. Due to an injury in 2019, he’s not highly coveted by a lot of teams and will probably be available in the sixth round.
Another running back that would be a decent fit for the Chargers would actually be Taylor’s college teammate, Antonio Gibson. Gibson is about 6’2″ and 220 pounds. He’s known for receiving out of the backfield and power running.
It’s not an absolute necessity for the Chargers to take a running back, as they could wait for undrafted free agency or pick up a current free agent. At the same time, it feels like a Telesco move to get some good value in the sixth or seventh round.