Despite their disappointing 2017 campaign, the Los Angeles Chargers do not have a ton of holes to fill this offseason. Finding an explosive defensive tackle to round out a formidable front should be a priority. Cornerback, safety, linebacker and offensive line can all afford to be addressed as well. Could a quarterback of the future be in the mix?
Round 1, pick 17: Maurice Hurst, DT, Michigan
There are rumors that Hurst may fall into the latter half of the first round, and if he does, I don’t suspect he’ll last long. The Chargers have big bodies against the run like Brandon Mebane, Damion Square and Corey Liuget, but an explosive, upfield presence who can provide a consistent interior pass rush to complement Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram would be a dream scenario for Los Angeles.
Round 2, pick 48: DeShon Elliott, S, Texas
If the Chargers lose Tre Boston in free agency, safety will be a big need. Elliott might not be the best athlete at the position, but he has range, ball skills and terrific instincts in deep coverage. As long as he runs well, you’ll hear more buzz around him as we move closer to the draft.
Round 3, pick 84: Frank Ragnow, C, Arkansas
The Chargers need a center to play between Forrest Lamp and Dan Feeney, and Ragnow’s toughness, physicality and technical prowess could be the perfect fit to round out the Chargers’ offensive line.
Round 4, pick 121: Brandon Parker, OT, North Carolina A&T
Parker is a developmental tackle with a lot of good physical and athletic traits and the tenacity Anthony Lynn wants to see in the run game. Technically he needs a lot of work, but with Russell Okung and Joe Barksdale in place, the Chargers can bring him along slowly and hope he transforms into a starter in the next few years.
Round 5, pick 157: Holton Hill, CB, Texas
Hill has plenty of character questions that could cause him to slide down boards, but the talent he possesses is obvious. Consistency eludes him, but Hill is long, athletic and has the man-coverage ability teams will eventually take a risk on.
Round 6, pick 194: Tegray Scales, LB, Indiana
Scales may not be the biggest or fastest linebacker in the class, but he has terrific instincts and processes quickly from an off-ball post. The Chargers don’t have a crying need at linebacker, but it’s not an overwhelming strength either. Scale will be a special teams stud and eventually work his way onto the field defensively.
Round 7, pick 251: Eddie Piniero, K, Florida
I don’t know anything about kickers, but I’ve been told this kid is crazy talented and left school early, so he has to be good, right? The Chargers lost several games because of unreliable kicking last season, and even though Nick Rose eventually swooped in and did a solid job, his eight games aren’t enough to bank on heading into the 2018 season.