Chargers general manager Tom Telesco has a track record of nailing picks in the NFL draft, that includes safety Derwin James, defensive end Joey Bosa and wide receiver Keenan Allen.
However, Telesco must add more playmakers and strengthen critical positions on the roster if Los Angeles wants to continue their dominance for years to come.
Here’s a look at the Chargers’ early three-round mock draft, courtesy of Draft Wire.
The Chargers have always struggled when it comes to addressing the interior of the defensive line. Even after the addition of third-round selection Justin Jones, it’s not safe to say that they are set at the position.
As exciting as Los Angeles is in terms of pass rush and pass defense, stopping the run and interior penetration continue to be issues. Defensive tackle Brandon Mebane is a replacement level player and a free agent along with Damion Square after the season, and Corey Liuget’s contract expires after 2019.
At 6-foot-4 and 285 pounds, Gerald Willis isn’t the biggest player for the position but is incredibly quick, powerful and disruptive off the ball. Willis is strong at the point of attack and hardly gets driven back by offensive linemen, even by double teams. That strength shows itself when he is in position to make a tackle against the run.
He has powerful hands, and ball carriers rarely escape once he gets a hold of them. He has an arsenal of pass-rushing counters, bend, flexibility and motor to make an impact when rushing the quarterback at the next level.
Here is what Draft Wire’s Gavino Borquez had to say about Willis landing with the Bolts.
The Chargers are building a bully on defense with Derwin James, a healthy Joey Bosa, Melvin Ingram and Desmond King. Defensive tackles Brandon Mebane and Damion Square are both free agents this offseason. Los Angeles needs one more piece to complete their defensive line puzzle and Gerald Willis would be the perfect complement. Willis is explosive off the line with quick hands that are always moving to beat opposing interior offensive linemen.