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What We Learned at the 2023 Combine


That's a wrap on the 2023 NFL Scouting Combine.

The Chargers spent the past week in Indianapolis getting to know prospects while also evaluating them through on-field drills, medical exams and in-person interviews.

There was also an eye on the current Bolts, too, as free agency begins next week.

Here are five takeaways from what we learned at the 2023 Combine:

1. Keenan Allen stays in powder blue

The biggest news of the week didn't have to do with a college prospect.

Instead, it was a short and strong statement from Chargers General Manager Tom Telesco.

"Keenan Allen isn't going anywhere."

While there had been outside rumblings that Allen could be on the move for salary cap-related reasons, Telesco put an end to that quickly.

The 30-year-old Allen, a 2013 third-round pick of the Chargers, will play his 11th season for the Bolts in 2023.

Allen has 796 career catches for 9,287 yards with 52 career touchdown catches.

He ranks second in franchise history in receptions, is third in receiving yards and is fourth overall in touchdown catches.

2. Good vibes with the new coordinators

Chargers Head Coach Brandon Staley had a busy Tuesday, as he made both the local and national media rounds.

As Staley looks toward Year 3 in charge, his biggest talking point was having a pair of new coordinatorson staff.

But Staley had nothing but praise from Kellen Moore and Derrick Ansley, as both have meshed well in their new roles.

Staley noted that Moore, a fresh face who was added to the staff as offensive coordinator in late January, has "the play style that I believe in" and focuses on "maximizing the quarterback."

Ansley isn't new around here, as he was the Bolts secondary coach the past two seasons. But he's more than ready for this new role as the defensive coordinator.

"He's been one of the most highly sought-after coaches in the NFL and in college the last couple years," Staley said. "He's as good of a defensive coach that I've been around and as good as a secondary coach as I've ever seen."

3. Plenty of on-field standouts

There were plenty of fireworks on the field the past few days at Lucas Oil Stadium.

Florida quarterback Anthony Richardson and Texas running back Bijan Robinson were among the offensive players stole the show.

The Bolts are not in the market for a quarterback, but Richardson still impressed in the vertical jump (40.5 inches) and broad jump (10-foot-9), posting the best numbers for a quarterback in those drills since 2006. He also ran the 40-yard dash in 4.43 seconds, which is tied for the fourth-fastest time for a QB since 2006.

Robinson, meanwhile, has been projected to the Chargers in recent mock drafts. His on-field workout was solid across the board — 4.46-second 40-yard dash, 37-inch vertical and 10-foot-7 broad jump — as he established himself as the draft's top running back.

Defensively, there was plenty of speed to go around.

Michigan cornerback DJ Turner II blazed to a 4.26 in the 40, the fastest at the Combine this year and tied for the fourth-fastest time ever.

Northwestern's Adetomiwa Adebawore, who is listed at 6-foot-2 and 282 pounds, might have had a more impressive time.

The defensive end ran a 4.49 in the 40, the fastest of any player weighing 280-plus pounds since 2003.

Maryland cornerback Deonte Banks was among the all-around standouts with a 4.35 40, 42-inch vertical and 11-4 broad jump.

4. The tight end class is legit

The tight end class was the talk of the league before the Combine, with NFL Network analyst Daniel Jeremiah saying it was the best group at that position he's seen in 10 years.

Pundits are still sky high on the group after the events in Indianapolis after media interviews and on-field drills.

Georgia's Darnell Washington, who measures in at 6-7 and 264 pounds, said he was "the most unique tight end in the draft."

He backed it up with a time of 4.64 in the 40, plus a 10-2 broad jump. Those marks were among the best by any tight end weighing 260-plus pounds in the past 20 years.

Notre Dame's Michael Mayer, Utah's Dalton Kincaid and Iowa's Sam LaPorta also impressed throughout the week.

Kincaid on Friday talked up his biggest strength.

"I think I'm one of the best pass catchers there is – not only in the tight end position but kind of throughout the draft," Kincaid said from the podium. "I think that's my best strength. I think I'm developing as a blocker, and I have room to grow in that aspect of my game."

5. The wide receivers impressed, too

Even with the Allen news (see above), there's a chance some experts could still have the Chargers taking a wide receiver in the first few rounds of the 2023 NFL Draft.

Most pundits agree that continuing to surround Justin Herbert with skill players is always a safe bet, and there were a handful of wide receivers that stood out in Indianapolis.

Ohio State's Jaxon Smith-Njigba led the way in the 3-cone drill (6.57 seconds) and 20-yard shuttle (3.93 seconds). And Tennesee's Jalin Hyatt had the top broad jump at 11-3.

Both players have been projected to the Bolts in recent mock drafts.

Another name to watch?

Oklahoma's Marvin Mims, Jr., who put together a solid week at the Combine.

He tied for the fourth-fastest time in the 40 (4.38) and also tied for the fourth-best vertical jump (39-5) and 3-cone drill (6.90).

Mims, listed at 5-11 and 183 pounds, averaged 19.5 yards per catch in his college career.

Bolt Up for 2023!

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