The 2022 NFL Draft has more unknowns when it pertains to the LA Chargers than the last two versions of the NFL Draft. With the 17th overall pick, the Chargers could go multiple ways and it is all dependent on what happens in the 16 picks prior.
When the Chargers are finally on the clock, Tom Telesco and Brandon Staley will have to evaluate who is still on the board and if they rank high enough to justify taking them with the 17th pick. If nobody who the Chargers like falls to 17 then trading back and picking up extra draft capital would be the smartest move. After all, LA does not have a second-round pick because of the Khalil Mack trade.
ESPN's Bill Barnwell continued his annual tradition of finding one potential trade for every single first-round pick in the NFL Draft. Barnwell suggested two deals: a trade-up for the 12th overall pick (which is possible if someone who the Bolts really like falls to 12), or a trade down with the Detroit Lions at the 32nd pick.
In the proposed Lions trade, the Bolts would receive the 32nd and 34th overall pick in exchange for the 17th and 79th overall pick. While this trade checks out on the NFL Draft Pick Value Chart, there are some tweaks that I would make.
First of all, if the Lions are trading up for the 17th overall pick then that indicates there is someone who they really like worth trading up for. Perhaps that can be where the team lands its starting quarterback. If that is the case, the Bolts will have the leverage and can offer a trade that is slightly favored in their direction.
How the LA Chargers should tweak this Detroit Lions trade:
There are one of two options. The first option is to include two later picks in the 2022 NFL Draft. Instead of trading the team's third-round pick, it would be better to trade a fourth-round pick as well as one of the four compensatory picks in the last two rounds. It leans in favor of the Chargers in terms of "value", but again, LA would have some type of leverage over Detroit.
The other option would be to trade next year's third-round pick with a seventh-round pick in this year's draft. Future picks have less value, which is why the Bolts still trade a late-round pick. The Lions would still get a third-round pick but the Chargers would keep their pick this year as they fill out the roster.
If the Bolts did one of these two tweaks on this proposed deal that would give them three picks in the top 80, allowing the team to draft an impact corner, offensive lineman and whatever else is available to the team.