Why the Chargers will be okay in 2024 despite all the roster holes

Though the Chargers let key players go, fans should trust that Jim Harbaugh will build a competitive team in this year's draft due to his competitive advantage. Moreover, he has succeeded in overcoming adversity in his previous head coaching jobs.
Los Angeles Chargers Introduce Jim Harbaugh As Head Coach
Los Angeles Chargers Introduce Jim Harbaugh As Head Coach / Ronald Martinez/GettyImages

With less than two weeks before the NFL draft, there is some concern about the makeup of the Los Angeles Chargers roster heading into 2024. Some key players left the team, and they did not make the flashiest free agency transactions. As a matter of fact, RB Gus Edwards is the most eye-catching signing of this offseason.

For example, former Patriots WR and two-time Super Bowl champion Chris Hogan commented on Good Morning Football that, while confident that Harbaugh will do "good things" offensively, he "got to add some more pieces to this puzzle to try to make that work."

Given Harbaugh's prospect knowledge and his background of turning mediocre programs and players successful, fans should trust the 2024 Chargers roster will compete for a playoff spot.

Jim Harbaugh knows draft talent better than anyone

Having scouted hundreds of players at Michigan, Harbaugh certainly has a competitive advantage over the rest of the league in this year's and next year's draft. Not only can he identify talent, but he has personally interacted with many of them and their families. He knows if they have what it takes–both on a football level and emotionally–to excel in the NFL.

Here is a clip of him from the Chargers X account at the Michigan pro-day, where he shows how personal of a relationship he established with his players and their families:

That's why, if the Chargers decided to trade down in order to accumulate picks, they would build a competitive, young team that would smoothly deal with the salary cap for the next few seasons.

Coach Harbaugh has overcome adversity like no one in the NFL

Harbaugh knows what it's like to turn losing teams triumphant. For instance, his first head coaching gig was with the University of San Diego Toreros, not a historically successful program. Nevertheless, they went 29-6 under Harbaugh, with two straight seasons going 11-1.

What comes to mind the most is his tenure with the 49ers. Though a winning franchise, they had been lousy for the past decade. Prior to his hiring, they had gone eight consecutive seasons without a winning record. However, he led San Francisco to the NFC Championship game in each of his first three seasons, including a Super Bowl run.

He leveraged Alex Smith and Colin Kaepernick's strengths–not superstars by any stretch of the imagination–to lead the 49ers to championship competitiveness. Harbaugh's experience in elevating players and his upper hand in the draft makes him–along with Justin Herbert–the main reason LA will be a playoff contender in 2024.