It is a new era of football for the LA Chargers. With Jim Harbaugh and his choice of GM in the building, there is legitimate hope that the Chargers can actually make a Super Bowl run in the next several years. That never felt like it was happening with Tom Telesco and Brandon Staley.
While Staley shockingly has multiple interview requests this offseason, Telesco has already found a new job. In what was a shocking move, the Las Vegas Raiders hired Telesco to be the team's next GM less than two full months after their 63-21 win resulted in him being fired.
After watching how poorly Telesco built rosters for many years, Chargers fans are happy that he stayed in the division with the team's biggest rival. If Telesco has the same draft resume in Vegas as he did in LA then it is going to be tough sledding for the Raiders.
But Telesco might be changing his ways entirely, at least that is what it seems like is happening. On a recent episode of the Las Vegas Raiders Insider podcast, Hondo Carpenter shared that a source close to the team explained to him what Telesco is prioritizing as GM of the Raiders (h/t Raiders Beat).
"At every position… [Tom Telesco] is putting a massive, and that is the word that they used, a massive value on speed. That is a big deal to him."
Tom Telesco prioritizing speed on the Raiders is a slap in the face to Chargers fans
Chargers fans who have followed Telesco's roster building for a decade know that speed was never something that he prioritized. Time and time again the Chargers would bring in slower players at skill positions and it hurt the team.
To be fair, Telesco did say last April how the Chargers needed to add speed at every position but that came after a decade of learning the hard way. But even with Telesco saying that, it isn't like the Chargers drafted the biggest speed threat in the 2023 NFL Draft.
Los Angeles drafted Quentin Johnston with the 21st overall pick after he posted a 4.49 40-yard dash time. That is by no means slow, and Johnston does have speed, but there were quicker options available that ended up being better pros. Zay Flowers ran a 4.42 and was undoubtedly a faster prospect. But he wasn't six-four, so the Chargers didn't draft him.
Hopefully, Telesco has not fully learned from his mistakes and continues to make the same gaffes with the Raiders that he did with the Chargers. Because if he just now figured out that speed is kind of important, well then he might continue hurting the Chargers but this time with the Raiders.