NFL mock draft: 4 biggest 2024 draft needs for the Chargers

Los Angeles Chargers v Minnesota Vikings
Los Angeles Chargers v Minnesota Vikings / Stephen Maturen/GettyImages
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2. Tight end

This was a big need for the Chargers in the 2023 NFL Draft. Many fans and pundits alike thought that the Chargers would capitalize on the historically deep 2023 tight end draft class to get someone who could be a proper backup to Gerald Everett this season before tanking over the reigns as the starting tight end next season.

The team certainly had its chances to pick a tight end. There was not a single tight end taken before the Bolts in the first round, so the team could have had its choice of tight end over Quentin Johnston with the 21st pick. Tuli Tuipulotu was a great second-round pick so that is fine in hindsight, but even in round three the Chargers could have taken Darnell Washington.

Instead, the Chargers did not address the position at all and now the long-term prospects of tight end are unclear. Everett is a free agent after the season and there is no guarantee that he returns. The tight end class in 2024 is not going to be as good as 2023 and even then, it is a big ask for a rookie tight end to start.

There are no other options currently on the roster that are going to be capable of starting next season, which means the Bolts will either have to trust a rookie to learn on the job quickly or will have to sign another stopgap option that would be cheaper than Everett.

Literally all the stars were aligned for the Chargers to take a tight end in the 2023 NFL Draft. Now, it is going to be a pressing need in the 2023 offseason with a much murkier path than the year before.