Los Angeles Chargers Won’t Lock Themselves Into A First Round Tackle

The Los Angeles Chargers have one of the NFL’s best young quarterbacks in Justin Herbert. However, they also have one of the worst offensive lines. After finishing as PFF’s worst unit, many expect the Chargers to aggressively address the tackle position in the NFL Draft. However, general manager Tom Telesco says that may not be the case on draft day.

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Tom Telesco: Chargers Won’t Force A Tackle In NFL Draft

During his pre-draft press conference, Telesco acknowledged that the offensive line needs to be better heading into 2021. However, in that same breath, he also added that the Los Angeles Chargers aren’t “just a better offensive line away from winning a championship.” This matches with earlier comments from Telesco, as he previously said that he and the organization are high on current left tackle Trey Pipkins.

Of course, there is a very real chance that this is all a smokescreen. The buildup to the NFL Draft is all about lying, as teams that give away their intentions tend to have a harder time securing their ideal prospects. It’s hard to imagine that Los Angeles is actually all that high on Pipkins, as he finished 2020 as PFF’s 72nd-best tackle out of 79 eligible players.

The Los Angeles Chargers currently hold the 13th overall pick and might have a tough time getting either of the premier tackles in this draft class. Penei Sewell and Rashawn Slater are both expected to be top-10 selections, which means that the Chargers might have to trade up if they want to secure either one of their services. By denying an interest in offensive tackles, Telesco is probably trying to lower the cost of a potential trade up.

If the Chargers can’t come to terms in a possible deal, then their best option is probably trading down. Telesco is correct about being more than an offensive tackle away from a Super Bowl, and there really aren’t any other tackles worthy of the 13th overall selection. Moving back and taking someone like Dillon Radunz while picking up additional draft capital would be a pretty solid consolation prize if Los Angeles can’t land an elite prospect.

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