We here at Bolt Beat bring weekly LA Chargers mock drafts that explore what the Chargers could do over the course of all seven rounds in the 2022 NFL Draft. Today, we present the first full first-round mock draft with 32 selections.
I did okay in my full first-round mock draft last year, although I did not expect Rashawn Slater to fall to 13 and had the Bolts selecting Christian Darrisaw instead. My best call of the mock draft was the Chicago Bears trading up for Justin Fields, although I had them trading up to four.
If the 2022 NFL Draft shapes up like this mock draft then the LA Chargers have a tough choice at 17.
1. Jacksonville Jaguars select Aidan Hutchinson, EDGE, Michigan
This year's first-overall pick is not nearly as decided like last year's and it sucks for the Jaguars that there is not a quarterback worth taking first overall as the team would be better off trading down from the top spot. While the Jags could go with an offensive lineman, Aidan Hutchinson appears to be the best guy in this class and the Jags simply select the best available at no. 1.
2. Detroit Lions select Kayvon Thibodeaux, EDGE, Oregon
Kayvon Thibodeaux was expected to be the no. 1 overall pick before the season and he has seen his draft stock fall since then. Very few people have Thibodeaux going second overall and there is more momentum for him falling out of the top five. However, with two solid tackles, the Lions instead bolster the defense and take the premium edge rusher, marking their second Oregon Duck selection in a row.
3. Houston Texans select Evan Neal, OT, Alabama
The Texans already have Laremy Tunsil but they cannot pass up on getting the best offensive player in this draft in tackle Evan Neal. Neal and Tunsil instantly give the Texans one of the best tackle duos in the league and it even opens the door for the Texans to trade Tunsil for draft capital in the future.
4. New York Jets select Ahmad Gardner, CB, Cincinnati
This might be a bit higher than most people have Ahmad Gardner going but he is the best cornerback in this draft class and the New York Jets need help in the secondary. Robert Saleh continues to build out his defense by taking a true CB1 that he hopes can bring some swagger to the Jets' defense.