For the last several years, the Los Angeles Chargers have been somewhat of a cursed franchise. Whether it was the injury bug (or plague) or historical collapses in the fourth quarter, the Bolts seemed to always find a way to frustrate their fan base to no end.
This past season, the Chargers kicked off the year in usual form by losing several close games due to kicking errors and poor coaching decisions. However, the team seemed to have turned a corner around mid-season and finished out the year on a strong note, but not before seven players were injured in the second match-up with the Kansas City Chiefs.
That game shined a light on some flaws within the team’s depth and I’m going to be taking on the responsibility of fixing those issues, myself.
Ready, set, let’s ride.
Round 1 Pick 17 – Vita Vea, Defensive Tackle, Washington
Vita Vea is a physical specimen who will leave scouts watering at the mouth due to his rare combination of size and athleticism. You don’t see many defensive tackles making plays on punt coverage, if at all. At 6’4 and 344lbs., Vea has the girth to fill space and the tenacity to put pressure on the QB from anywhere along the defensive interior. Some would say the Bolts could have pulled out a few more wins if they were able to stop the run. Vea fixes that issue immediately.
Round 2 – Uchenna Nwosu, Outside Linebacker, USC
Uchenna Nwosu is a versatile OLB that had his fair share of splash plays made in Mobile during Senior Bowl week. There were times in 1-on-1 drills with the offensive line where he looked almost impossible to block. To compliment his pass rush ability, Nwosu displays the athleticism needed to also drop back in pass coverage for the OTTO position in Gus Bradley’s defense.
Round 3 – Kyzir White, Safety, West Virginia
Kyzir White became one of the early shiners at the Senior Bowl when he baited Tanner Lee into throwing a pass across his body into the saftey’s waiting arms. At 6’2 and 215 lbs., White exhibits an NFL-ready physique, natural athleticism, and a willingness to rush the quarterback. When combined, these traits make him the perfect fit for a hybrid role where he can be used as a chess piece to be moved in and out of positions, where he is built to succeed.
If Tre Boston decides not to re-sign with the Chargers, you may see this position need filled in an earlier round.
Another big hit on a pressure by Kyzir White . He’s all over the field pic.twitter.com/WRvQZIbef4
— Matt (@PatsFanMatt) February 6, 2018
Round 4 – Scott Quessenberry, Center, UCLA
Scott Quessenberry came out of nowhere to supplant himself as one of the top-5 centers in this draft class. Q-Berry initially impressed me with his film against Washington where he held his own against the #1 rush defense that included stud defensive tackles Vita Vea and Phillip Gaines. With a boxy frame and exemplary phone booth speed, Quessenberry would be an athletic pivot in Ken Whisenhunt’s offense that could really open up some more options in the run game.
Round 5 – Dimitri Flowers, Tight End/Fullback, Oklahoma
Dimitri Flowers is not a household name among college football fans, but I believe he should be. I mean, who wouldn’t want a 6’3 250 lbs. Swiss Army knife on their team, willing and able to make the clutch catch, or churn out some tough yards on the ground when the moment calls. If you watched any Baker Mayfield film it was impossible not to notice Flowers, as he was utilized in a number of ways for the Sooners and was usually one of Mayfield’s favorite targets. I see Flowers playing in that Mike Tolbert/Kyle Juszcyzk role — aka a short yardage specialist with the potential to rack up 6 or 7 touchdowns a year, all coming usually from within the deep red-zone.
Round 6 – Braxton Berrios, Wide Receiver, Miami
Although Braxton Berrios may wind up on the lighter side, it would be a mistake for people to write him off for his shortcomings. Berrios received a lot of attention from the quarterbacks at the Senior Bowl, seemingly being targeted on every other throw. The Chargers have lacked any sort of spark in their special teams unit, which has been one of the worst in the league over the last couple years. Berrios would provide another option in the return game, while possibly adding some value as a slot man for quarterback Philip Rivers.
Round 7 – Brett Toth, Offensive Tackle, Army
With all the injuries and troubles the Chargers offensive line has suffered through over the last several years, why not take a late round flier on a project like Brett Toth? The guy has ideal height and length (6’6 310 lbs.) and just needs a redshirt-type year to get adjusted to the NFL game after spending his college career as a tackle in a triple-option offense. If anything, the guys knows how to run block, and could eventually become a valuable swing-tackle for a run game sorely needing some new wrinkles.