Chargers Draft

LA Chargers select Patrick Surtain in first 2021 mock draft

TUSCALOOSA, ALABAMA - SEPTEMBER 07: Patrick Surtain II #2 of the Alabama Crimson Tide reacts after intercepting a pass intended for Austin Shaw #13 of the New Mexico State Aggies at Bryant-Denny Stadium on September 07, 2019 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
TUSCALOOSA, ALABAMA - SEPTEMBER 07: Patrick Surtain II #2 of the Alabama Crimson Tide reacts after intercepting a pass intended for Austin Shaw #13 of the New Mexico State Aggies at Bryant-Denny Stadium on September 07, 2019 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)
(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) /

In the sixth round, the LA Chargers select…

Khalil Herbert. 182. 847. . Running back

A Hebert a draft keeps the doctor away. Khalil Herbert is a prospect that’s rapidly climbing draft boards with an explosive 2020 season.

The only two players certain to return next year in the backfield are Austin Ekeler and Joshua Kelley. Justin Jackson will probably leave in the offseason and I’m not sure it’s certain that Kalen Ballage carves out a role significant enough for 2020.

I still haven’t really been impressed with Kelley honestly. There was some aggressive and decisive running in the first few weeks, but there’s been a noticeable decline in efficiency. When an practice squad player is routinely trusted more by the coaching staff than the guy the team took in the fourth round of the draft, it’s problematic.

With the Hokies, Herbert has 105 carries for 853 yards in 2020. That’s a whopping 8.1 yards per carry, along with eight touchdowns from scrimmage. His quick burst off of the line as well as decisive running have him on pace to complete the best season by a Va. Tech running back.

#VaTech RB Khalil Herbert came into today averaging 12.4 yards per carry and an FBS leading 7.5 yards after contact. Another explosive play on this 52-yard TD.

His third straight 100-yard game, which matches his career total while at Kansas (35 games).pic.twitter.com/SmvEuPi21T

— Jordan Reid (@JReidNFL) October 10, 2020

Perhaps people will stress that the Chargers’ need a power back, and that’s partially true. Power backs are relatively easy to find around the league though. Elusive and dynamic Darren Sproles/Tarik Cohen type talents aren’t. YAC ability (yards after contact) proves that Herbert can be a strong running back without the physical size.

With their other sixth round pick, the LA Chargers select…

878. . Wide Receiver. Ihmir Smith-Marsette. 195

Iowa hasn’t had a receiver drafted since 2012. They will certainly have one drafted here with Ihmir Smith-Marsette. Brandon Smith could serve as the second Iowa receiver to get drafted.

The Chargers don’t need to go for a receiver too early. Keenan Allen, Mike Williams, Jalen Guyton, and K.J. Hill are all very likely to return next year. In the sixth or seventh round though, I think it’s worth it to take a chance on a potential steal.

Due to his position, Smith-Marsette has a chance to rise up draft boards as a day two pick with his ability. Last season was a real breakout for the potential NFL draft pick as he caught 44 receptions for 722 yards. He also can be a threat out of the backfield as he’s put up 232 yards on 30 rushing attempts in his career.

There’s some special teams potential here too. Smith-Marsette had averaged 29.4 kick return yards per return. The Chargers certainly need a lift in the return game.

In the seventh round, the LA Chargers select…

226. 812. . Tight End. Luke Farrell

Tight end could be a significant need for the Chargers in the draft. Even in the scenario where Hunter Henry returns to the team on a contract extension, blocking would still be a concern for me. Henry has had to do double duty when it comes to blocking with the unfortunate injury for Virgil Green.

Luke Farrell is one of the best blocking tight ends in the draft. Jeremy Ruckert often overshadows his Buckeye teammate when it comes to the tight end position due to the fact that he’s a better receiving option, but Farrell had some route-running prowess. His physical strength as a receiver is a joy to watch as well.

Justin Fields 21 yard TD pass to Luke Farrell. Ohio State up 17-7 (2nd quarter)pic.twitter.com/3l4Wxj5Hjt

— The Buckeye Nut (@TheBuckeyeNut) October 6, 2019

Next. Is Tom Telesco on the hot seat?

Taking blocking responsibility off of Henry to let him be used more as a receiver is a must, whether that’s done through the draft or free agency.

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