The Los Angeles Chargers were so close to making the AFC Playoffs, but finished with a 9-8 record after losing to the Las Vegas Raiders 26-11 in a win or go home game in the last week of the season. The Chargers are almost there, so the organization finally stepped in the offseason by signing free agent CB JC Jackson and trading for pass rusher Khalil Mack.
The AFC West Division will be absolutely loaded this upcoming year, so improving their depth through the NFL Draft is mandatory. Here is a look at who the Chargers selected.
Round 1, Pick 17: Zion Johnson - OL - Boston College (6'3", 312 lbs).
Johnson started at left tackle and at left guard during his college career at Boston College. He will compete for a starting position on the offensive line.
Round 3, Pick 15: JT Woods - S - Baylor (6'2", 195 lbs, 57 tackles, 4.5 tackles for loss, 6 INT, 2 pass break-ups).
Woods tied for the most interceptions in college football last season. A safety making those types of plays should see some time in the Chargers secondary.
Round 4, Pick 18: Isaiah Spiller - RB - Texas A&M (6'0", 217 lbs, 1,011 rushing yards, 6 TD).
The Chargers have been looking for an effective back-up running back for years since Austin Ekeler became the starter. Spiller is the best pick in this draft for the Chargers. He was very effective running the ball even though the Aggies passing game was almost non-existent for the entire season.
Round 5, Pick 17: Otito Ogbonnia - DT - UCLA (6'4", 324 lbs, 5 tackles for loss, 2 sacks).
Ogbonnia is an effective run-stopper, so he will see some time at nose tackle.
Round 6, Pick 16: Jamaree Salyer - OL - Georgia (6'3", 321 lbs).
Salyer started at tackle and at guard throughout his college tenure at Georgia, so he adds even more depth to the Chargers offensive line.
Round 6, Pick 36: Ja'Sir Taylor - DB - Wake Forest (5'11", 188 lbs, 60 tackles, 4 tackles for loss, 2 INT, 5 pass break-ups, 3 fumble recoveries, 26.3 yds per kick return, 1 kick return TD).
Taylor will compete for the returner spot.
Round 7, Pick 15: Deane Leonard - DB - Ole Miss (6'1", 194 lbs, 50 tackles, 7 pass break-ups).
Leonard will compete to see some time in the secondary.
Round 7, Pick 39: Zander Horvath - FB - Purdue (6'3", 230 lbs, 320 rushing yds, 3 TD).
The Chargers converted the most fourth downs last season with 22. The Chargers would like to convert more of those fourth and one situations this year with Horvath.
The Los Angeles Chargers were 4-1 at the start of the season, but finished 9-8 due to their lack of depth. The depth has been addressed with all eight picks in this NFL Draft. Grade: B-.