(Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports) – LA Chargers
2. Tom Telesco’s recent track record with obtaining/retaining talent isn’t great
I already know the first counter-point to this argument: “well, what about Justin Herbert?”
Justin Herbert has been fantastic and yes, Telesco is the one that drafted him. But let’s be honest: Herbert fell into the Chargers’ lap. They needed a quarterback and he was the best available. The next-best quarterback was Jordan Love. They were going to take the best quarterback no matter who it was.
Then they traded up for Kenneth Murray. Murray is really promising and there is plenty of time for him to blossom but they took a guy who is bad in pass coverage to almost exclusively play in pass coverage. Odd.
The 2019 draft class is even worse. Outside of Drue Tranquill, who is still just a potential breakout player, it is hard to get excited. Jerry Tillery has not been great, although he has taken steps this year. Nasir Adderley has been really disappointing and the final three picks are all non-factors.
The year prior the team got Derwin James, who again, kind of fell on the team’s lap after falling 10+ spots farther than expected. Uchenna Nwosu was a good pick but the rest of the draft was just filler depth guys who make small impacts but are not huge impact players. Justin Jackson can be but is always hurt.
Telesco has failed to target and identify offensive line talent in the draft, that is why the offensive line has been bad the last half-decade and hasn’t really found any of those late-draft gems that other teams find.
He also lets players who fit this team quite well walk. Adrian Phillips and Derek Watt were both very important to the special teams unit and Phillips was a playmaker on defense. Both signed elsewhere on minimal contracts. The LA Chargers easily could have retained them.
I am not an anti-Tom Telesco guy and they should not fire him unless they have a better replacement already in mind. However, the seeds definitely are planted for the Chargers to consider a change at general manager.