Surprising Chargers offensive lineman is getting first-team reps during OTAs

Los Angeles Charges OTA Offseason Workout
Los Angeles Charges OTA Offseason Workout / Harry How/GettyImages

The dust has settled on the 2024 NFL offseason and now the focus turns to what the LA Chargers can accomplish in the 2024 season. The first step of that transition to the future has happened with OTAs in full swing for the Bolts.

While OTAs are not as revealing as mini camp or training camp, it at least gives fans a very early look at what the team may look like in 2024. A lot can (and will) change until the Chargers take on the Las Vegas Raiders in Week 1 but OTAs at least serve as the foundation for the 2024 season.

And there are some surprises in that foundation. Jim Harbaugh and his coaching staff are trying some unique experiments as they look to find the best 53 players for the team in 2024. One of these surprises is Brenden Jaimes, who has received first-team offensive line reps not once but twice thus far during OTAs (h/t Eric Smith,

Brenden Jaimes surprisingly gets first-team reps on Chargers' offensive line

Prior to getting first-team reps at left guard the 2021 sixth-round pick also got first-team reps over Bradley Bozeman at center. Jaimes was the third-string center for the Bolts in 2023 and was forced to play late in the season after Will Clapp suffered an injury. And while fans were worried about Jaimes playing, he actually turned in some quality film at center.

Does this guarantee that Jaimes is going to start on the Chargers offensive line in 2024? Not at all. Any Chargers fans who do not believe in Jaimes don't need to start panicking about him being a below-average starter for the team in 2024.

What this does signal is that the offensive line is wide open. Outside of Rashawn Slater starting at left tackle and Joe Alt starting at right tackle, anything can happen. This might result in Jaimes starting or could result in Trey Pipkins playing right guard, or could even result in Jordan McFadden getting playing time at center.

The Chargers are committed to not boxing themselves in and want to start the five best offensive linemen that the team has on the roster. Giving Jaimes a chance at first-team reps to earn that only proves that the Chargers are committed to this philosophy.

So if Jaimes does end up starting for the Chargers in 2024 it won't be because of draft priors or anything of that nature. It will be because he earned it, and he outperformed the other offensive linemen not just during OTAs, but during training camp and the preseason as well.