Seven picks may seem like plenty for a roster that is loaded with talent at nearly every position, but for a team like the San Diego Chargers that is trying to replenish a depleted talent pool, it really isn’t much. The Bolts head into the 2013 NFL Draft with their allowed seven selections over the three-day festival which means they will have to be judicious with their choices. With glaring holes at left tackle, guard, running back, safety, and especially cornerback, the team has some serious work to do.
Finding a blindside protector has been all of the rage for the Chargers so far in the pre-draft buildup, but as the selection itself nears, it seems less and less likely that one of the top three tackles will be available at number 11 overall. With talk of the Miami Dolphins trading up into the top 10 to try and grab one of those three elites, the Bolts may be left without an option.
Given the fact that they have several areas of concern coming into this draft as we said off the top, why wouldn’t the Chargers try to move down if at all possible?
This is a deep draft, but not necessarily one with serious elite talent at the top. Finding a team that covets a particular player that may unexpectedly slide out of the top 10 to trade down with and accumulate additional picks to improve the roster would be a brilliant move by new General Manager Tom Telesco. Try this one on for size.
Clearly the Minnesota Vikings made a quick move to replace the departure of Percy Harvin this offseason in his trade to the Seattle Seahawks, but Greg Jennings is not the same dynamic threat as Harvin. If a player like Tavon Austin is still available at number 11 when the Chargers are put on the clock, dealing down with the Vikes would be a dream scenario for the Bolts. Minnesota has two first round picks to work with thanks to the Harvin deal, and if the Chargers could trade their 11th overall pick (worth 1,250 points on the trusty trade value chart) and their third round pick, 76th overall (worth 205 points), that would make a deal with the Vikes for the 23rd (760) and 25th (720) very plausible.
This type of premium to move up and grab a playmaker like Austin would not be unheard of as Minnesota would just be giving up 25 points in value on the chart. A deal of this level would allow the Chargers to potentially fix two huge holes in the first round with players like Desmond Trufant at cornerback and Menelik Watson at left tackle. The Vikings would get their Percy replacement while the Bolts would land two very important pieces toward their rebuild.
While this is all conjecture at this point, the closer the draft gets, the higher the prices on playmakers tends to rise. The Chargers could be in the ideal spot if a dynamic weapon like Austin gets outside of the top 10 to trade down with a team desperate for help at receiver which may even include the Houston Texans. When all is said and done, don’t be surprised if San Diego does some serious maneuvering in the first round to maximize their haul in the 2013 NFL Draft.