In what many would consider a surprising pick, the LA Chargers selected TCU wide receiver Quentin Johnston with the 21st overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft. There was a lot of speculation about who the Chargers might draft and Johnston was not someone who was many fans' radar.
This pick is definitely a polarizing one. There is a large contingent of Chargers fans that do not agree with the selection. Johnston still has his supporters, though, that are defending the pick for the Chargers.
Regardless of if you are defending Johnston or are against the selection, there is no denying that the pick was surprising. In hindsight it should not have been as there were several signs pointing right at Johnston during the entire draft process.
One of those signs is regarding the future. We all should have seen it coming because this Johnston selection guarantees a harsh reality for Keenan Allen and/or Mike Williams.
Quentin Johnston pick guarantees Keenan Allen and/or Mike Williams won't be on the Chargers roster in 2024.
The fact that the Chargers picked Johnston, who is six-foot-three and checks all of the physical-trait boxes that Tom Telesco has historically drafted, guarantees that the 2023 season is going to be the last for Allen and/or Williams in Los Angeles.
This isn't a new development, either. The Chargers restructured both receivers' contracts this offseason to create cap space for the 2023 season. As a result, it inflated both players' 2024 cap hit, making either player a potential cap casualty.
The Chargers are on the books for a combined cap hit of $67.1 million for Allen and Williams next season. It simply is not feasible to pay two receivers that kind of money, making it very likely that the team will part ways with one of the two receivers (or both).
This selection only guarantees that will happen. Because Johnston checks all the boxes the Chargers typically value, it is safe to say that the team picked him to be a role player in year one that can eventually develop into the team's WR2 in 2024. If both Allen and Williams struggle in 2023 then we could see the Chargers part ways with both and add another young receiver alongside Johnston.
If the team selected Zay Flowers instead it may have indicated that the Bolts were trying to make it work with both Williams and Allen in 2024. But because of Johnston's similarities (even though he is still a different type of weapon), it is safe to say that at least one of the two receivers will be gone.