3. A great 2021 draft
The LA Chargers had a fairly solid draft last season, however, it was very top-heavy. The Bolts got their franchise quarterback in Justin Herbert and a solid inside linebacker in Kenneth Murray, who should anchor this defense for years to come.
The rest of the draft class was not great. Selecting Joshua Kelley in the fourth round is still indefensible and Joe Reed and K.J. Hill will take time to develop. Alohi Gilman will probably always be a special teams player.
This draft was much better than the prior two drafts. I ranked the 2020 draft class as the third-best draft class in the Tom Telesco era, meanwhile 2019 ranked seventh (out of eight) and 2018 ranked fourth.
Telesco does a good job in landing star players in the first round almost every single draft, but his draft performance in the later rounds is really shaky. Of course, we cannot expect him to hit home runs on fourth and fifth-round picks every single time, but his second and third-round picks have not been that great in recent years.
The team traded those picks to get Murray last year and that might be the reason why. He picked Nasir Adderley and Trey Pipkins in 2019, Uchenna Nwosu and Justin Jones in 2018 (that is decent), Forrest Lamp and Dan Feeney in 2017. Definitely could be better.
The Chargers have several holes on this roster that need to be addressed and they do not have the funds that they had last offseason to go out and spend in free agency (plus, that tactic does not really work in the NFL).
The Bolts need a great draft in 2021 if they are ever going to realize the Super Bowl potential that is there with Herbert on his rookie contract.