As we get closer and close to the NFL Draft, every offensive lineman will be run through the Chargers draft options. But one guy that no one seems to be talking about as a possibility for them is Luke Joeckel. The superstar tackle out of Texas A&M is projected to go in the top 5, maybe even first overall. It seems highly unlikely that the Chargers would be able to move up to get him, and would it even be worth it?
On the board at offensive tackle, you have Joeckel and then you have Eric Fisher. Both are great talents at the left tackle spot and both, I think, will have promising NFL careers. But what makes Joeckel a potential number one overall candidate and leaves Fisher dropping down to maybe Arizona? Elite strength. Joeckel played in the SEC against top pass rushers. He can handle a bull rush or a speed rush. If by chance he’s beaten, he has shown that he has great recovery speed. Fisher, on the other hand, played at Central Michigan. There wasn’t much in terms of NFL caliber defensive ends. He has a great initial burst but struggles with the bull rush that many NFL lineman and linebackers love to implement.
With all of that being said, is there a chance that the Chargers could trade up and draft the top prospect at tackle? They’d have to give up an awful lot to get up there. First, they would have to know that the Chiefs were going to take a guy like guy Geno Smith and not Joeckel. That news won’t come out until closer to draft day. So as of right now, the Bolts would need to secure the number one spot. What do they have to offer to get up there? Nothing really. They could offer picks, but that would mean they’d have to make significant moves in free agency to secure some much needed help on other aspects of the roster.
Realistically, they have a chance to draft other great offensive lineman like Fisher, Chance Warmack or Lane Johnson. While Johnson might be a reach at number 11, the other two might hang around until then. And who knows, maybe Joeckel will fall down the board, but I wouldn’t count on it.