Perfect trade-down partner emerges for the Chargers at NFL Combine

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The LA Chargers hold the fifth pick in the 2024 NFL Draft and can do really damage with the selection. With new GM Joe Hortiz saying that the team will draft the best player available, many fans are expecting LSU wide receiver Malik Nabers to don the powder blue next season.

That being said, trading down as become the preferred outcome for many other fans. Hortiz comes from a team that has traded down a lot in the past in the Baltimore Ravens. If the Bolts can move down a few spots and still pick up an impact player then it will knock out two birds with one stone.

With this year's class having several top-of-the-line quarterback prospects, and the New York Giants being a QB-hungry team with the sixth pick, the Chargers are in the perfect position to trade down. And thanks to Atlanta Falcons GM Terry Fontenot, the Bolts may now know where they can trade down to.

Falcons are a no-brainer trade partner for the Chargers in the 2024 NFL Draft

Fontenot didn't fully commit to trading up in the draft but it is clear that anything is on the table for the Atlanta Falcons and that they are a team to watch. If Atlanta doesn't end up trading for Justin Fields then the team very well could look to leapfrog the Giants and take the team's next franchise quarterback with the fifth pick.

After all, the Falcons have a lot of talent on offense and some real blue-chippers on defense. They really are just a quarterback away and head coach Raheem Morris acknowledged that, saying he would not have even had the chance to get the job if Atlanta had the right QB already in place.

This is a team that is hungry for a quarterback and if the right name falls to the fifth pick then the Chargers could reap the rewards. Atlanta is getting an extra mid-round pick from the Jaguars (the value of which depends on if playing time requirements were met by Calvin Ridley) so the team will be more willing to part ways with a selection in the 2024 NFL Draft.

As great as it would be to try and pry the Falcons' 2025 first-round pick off their hands, that is probably a bit rich to move up just three spots in the draft. However, if the right quarterback falls, the Chargers could absolutely get the 40th pick from the Falcons to move back three spots. If Atlanta is really desperate, the Chargers might even be able to add a future mid-round pick or a late-round pick in 2024 as well.

Regardless, the asking price starts with the 40th pick in the draft, giving the Chargers a total of three picks in the top 40 if this were to happen. That is exceptional value, especially considering who might still be on the board with the eighth pick.

One of Rome Odunze or Brock Bowers should absolutely still be on the board when the eighth pick rolls around, especially if we are assuming at least three of the top seven picks are quarterbacks. If four or five of the top seven picks are quarterbacks then there is a world in which Malik Nabers even falls (although the Tennessee Titans would be absolutely foolish to pass on him).

Regardless, trading back and picking up the 40th pick in the draft would be exceptional for the Bolts. After seeing Fontenot's comments, Hortiz should be on the phone with Atlanta.