COSTA MESA, Calif. — The NFL draft is over, and the Los Angeles Chargers draft class is complete. They stayed put with each other picks and didn’t move up or down.
Chargers general manager Tom Telesco and head coach Brandon Staley were excited about how they would use each player.
Here are the grades for the draft class:
- WR Quentin Johnston TCU
The staff felt it was time to start thinking about the future of the receiving group. Johnston is about 6’3 but has the speed the offense is looking for to burn the opposing defense. He called himself unique because there isn’t a receiver in the league like him.
He is hungry to learn, so he wants Keenan Allen and Mike Williams to teach him how to grow professionally. Many young receivers in the past have raved about Allen’s willingness to help them grow with his advice.
Johnston should make an impact when his number is called upon. He does bring a unique set of receiving skills. He only needs to work on his catching because he tends to body catch, which is why he drops passes, but it is fixable.
2. Edge Tuli Tuipulotu USC
The defense needed another weapon out on the edge. Last season, they lost Joey Bosa for most of the season, so they need to have solid backups. Tuli gives them just that. He grew during his junior year and became one of the better pass rushers in the NCAA.
Head coach Brandon Staley said they see him as an edge player, but the way this defense works, especially on third down, he may see some third down reps on the inside.
Expect the young edge rusher to have an impact right away.
3. LB Daiyan Henley Washington St.
The athleticism that Henley possesses is unique. He is a former quarterback, receiver, safety, and corner converted to a college linebacker. Henley has seen the field from many different angles, which is a positive for the way he sees plays develop.
Telesco and Staley said the rookie linebacker will primarily play special teams, but he may find his way into the lineup. The first three years of Kenneth Murray have been a rocky start to his career. Henley could push him for the starting spot with a strong training camp.
Many draft experts have dubbed Henley as one of the steals of the draft.
4. WR Derius Davis TCU
The second of three Horned Frogs being drafted by the Chargers. The coaching staff sees Davis as a returner, not as a receiver. Staley said he has their full trust as the returner, and they expect good things from Davis.
Not only can Davis return kicks, but he could also occasionally help in the passing game. He ran jet sweeps and other gadget plays while at TCU, gaining either a first down or a touchdown. Davis was unbelievable speed.
The need was there for a returner, but this might have been a reach.
5. G Jordan McFadden Clemson
This could be a “lightning strikes twice” kind of pick because last year, they selected Jamaree Salyer in the sixth round, and he looks like the steal of the draft. McFadden could be the next one. He played both tackle positions at Clemson and will move to guard with the Chargers.
Staley and Telesco said they viewed him as an inside player. He should bring much-added depth to the Charger’s offensive line.
6. DT Scott Matlock Boise St.
This selection could be a fan favorite soon. Matlock brings this wild energy to him that fans can feed off of, especially in tight moments. He could help in both the pass and run game, so there will be heavy competition for the players on the bubble for the defensive line.
7. QB Max Duggan TCU
This completed the Horned Frog trio drafted by the Chargers. The former TCU quarterback did a good job at TCU, but many experts believed the Chargers could have found more talent instead of drafting a quarterback.