With the 85th pick of the 2023 NFL Draft, the Los Angeles Chargers select: TCU RB Kendre Miller
TCU's Kendre Miller met with the Chargers at TCU about a week ago. As with any mock draft of a running back to Los Angeles, the Austin Ekeler situation is in the air. Miller however is the type of player I'd select to both complement and replace Ekeler.
Miller's prototypical size gives credence to the idea that he can be a reliable workhorse at the NFL level. However for his frame he also has incredible movement in his ability to bounce side to side. For his college career, Miller was in the 95th percentile of explosive run rate as well as in the 90th percentile of forced missed tackles.
In the vein of the Chargers' spiller pick last year, Miller is also very young as he'll turn 21 just two months after the draft. Less tread on the tires is generally good for someone expected to eventually be a true bell cow.
The Chargers have never really relied upon Ekeler to run 20+ times a game and there's several reasons why from Ekeler's usage rate to the offensive scheme that was utilizing him. But Miller would be a great way to take some of the runs off of Ekeler's plate and decrease some of the intense usage he's had in previous seasons without a true RB2.
Miller adds a layer to an Ekeler-based running back room with his size + explosiveness combo as a complement and potentially sets them up for a post-Ekeler world. Best of both worlds here.