5 local prospects Chargers may select in 2024 NFL Draft

UCLA v USC / Ryan Kang/GettyImages

The LA Chargers have had some success with taking local prospects in the NFL Draft. Last year, the Chargers' best pick of the draft was Tuli Tuipulotu, who was selected in the second round after a strong college career at USC.

Head coach Jim Harbaugh might be new to Southern California but he is very familiar with the college prospects who are coming into the league. If there is a solid prospect who can help the Chargers who happens to be local, Harbaugh will know about them.

There certainly are talented prospects coming out of the LA college football scene and depending how the draft shakes out, the Chargers may keep them in LA for their professional career.

5 local prospects the Chargers may select in the 2024 NFL Draft:

RB MarShawn Lloyd

The USC running back isn't just a local prospect but he also has legitimate ties to the Chargers via running backs coach Kiel McDonald. McDonald left the Trojans this offseason to join the Chargers' staff, drawing a direct line between the Bolts and Lloyd.

Even with J.K. Dobbins now on the roster, Lloyd would be a smart addition who would balance nicely along with what the Chargers already have. Lloyd is a solid change-of-pace option who would add a value in the passing game that currently does not exist in the running back room.

WR Brenden Rice

The son of Hall of Famer Jerry Rice has openly talked about joining the Chargers in the 2024 NFL Draft and even talked about how Harbaugh previously recruited him before he ultimately went to USC. Brenden Rice sounds like someone who wants to be a Charger and the Bolts could make his wish come true depending on how the draft shakes out.

The Chargers need to add a wide receiver earlier in the draft that can carry the load as a top pass-catcher. Rice is someone who the team could take in the middle rounds to fill out the depth of the wide receiver room and prepare for the future.

From a logistical standpoint, Rice projects to be an X receiver in the NFL who offers a solid contested-catch option. The Chargers do not have that without Mike Williams, and Rice could develop into someone who is 80% of what Williams was in the future.

WR Tahj Washington

There is another USC wide receiver who the Chargers could draft later in the 2024 NFL Draft. Tahj Washington projects to go later than Rice, so he might be a more likely prospect as the Chargers could take him in the fifth or sixth round.

Washington is not an X receiver but he would add depth in the slot, which may not exist much depending who else the team drafts and signs. Like Rice, Washington has good hands at the point of attack and that makes him intriguing as a late-round receiver.

EDGE Laiatu Latu

UCLA edge rusher Laiatu Latu is one of the best edge rushers in the entire draft and is not someone whom the Chargers will draft with the fifth pick. However, if the Chargers trade back in the first round then the door swings open to take Latu.

The edge rusher room is a bit crowded right now but the Chargers may simply look to take the best player available if they trade back to 11. There is a good chance that Latu will be the best player available and the Chargers could get creative with moving Tuli Tuipulotu to the inside.

Trading back and taking Latu would be far better than trading back and drafting a tackle. That is for certain.

EDGE Gabriel Murphy

Latu's teammate Gabriel Murphy is far more likely to be taken by the Chargers as he projects to be available on day three of the draft. It would not be surprising if Murphy ends up going higher than that, as he has legitimate traits that are exciting to watch on film.

The Chargers need to start building out the depth of the edge rusher room beyond 2024 and Murphy is one of the most exciting mid-round prospects to help that process. He may not have traditional NFL size, but Murhpy can be a productive pro.

LB Darius Muasau

The Chargers need to build out the linebacker room and will use the NFL Draft to do so. If Darius Muasau is the first linebacker that the Bolts take in the draft then the team is in trouble. Los Angeles needs to take a linebacker that can play starting snaps as early as 2024.

Don't be surprised if the Chargers take a second linebacker on day three of the draft to build out the room and add special teams value. As one of the more athletic day-three linebacker prospects, Muasau may be an intriguing prospect that Jesse Minter wants to get his hands on to craft into a future starter.