Chargers Draft

LA Chargers: The team’s track record of trading up in the first round

NORMAN, OK - SEPTEMBER 22: Kenneth Murray #9 of the Oklahoma Sooners celebrates after defeating the Army West Point Black Knights at Gaylord Family-Oklahoma Memorial Stadium on September 22, 2018 in Norman, Oklahoma. (Photo by Jamie Schwaberow/Getty Images)
NORMAN, OK - SEPTEMBER 22: Kenneth Murray #9 of the Oklahoma Sooners celebrates after defeating the Army West Point Black Knights at Gaylord Family-Oklahoma Memorial Stadium on September 22, 2018 in Norman, Oklahoma. (Photo by Jamie Schwaberow/Getty Images)
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(Photo by Owen C. Shaw/Getty Images) – LA Chargers
(Photo by Owen C. Shaw/Getty Images) – LA Chargers

The LA Chargers made a surprising move in the 2020 NFL Draft when they traded their second and third-round pick to the New England Patriots in exchange for the 23rd overall pick, selecting Kenneth Murray.

Murray is a much-needed physical, run-stuffing brute of an inside linebacker that definitely feels like he is worth the trade up. While on paper it seemed like a lot, the Chargers essentially traded a third-round pick to move up 14 spots back into the first round.

The LA Chargers have not traded up in the first round often in the team’s history, only doing so five times, in fact.

Here are the five times that the LA Chargers traded up in the first round of the 2020 NFL Draft and how they faired afterward.

1979: Kellen Winslow

  • Traded 1979 first (20) and 1979 second (47) to Cleveland for 13th overall pick

The first trade-up in LA Chargers’ history gave the team its greatest tight end of all-time (until Antonio Gates came around) and one of the greatest tight ends of all-time in Kellen Winslow.

The Chargers traded their second-round pick to the Cleveland Browns to move up seven spots and take one of two Hall of Famers that were selected in the first round that year. Seven picks later, the Browns selected Willis Adams, who was a non-impactful receiver for the team for seven years.

More importantly, with the 47th overall pick, the team selected offensive tackle Sam Claphan. Ironically, Claphan never played for the Browns, due to a preseason injury, and was signed by the Chargers in 1980 and spent his seven-year career in San Diego.

So not only did the Chargers get a Hall of Fame tight end, they ended up getting the guy that was picked with the selection that they traded for the Hall of Fame tight end.

That is a massive win in my book.

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