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5 Takeaways: Daniel Jeremiah Outlines Chargers Ideal 1st Round in NFL Draft


The countdown to the 2024 NFL Draft is heating up.

NFL Network draft analyst Daniel Jeremiah held a nearly two-hour conference call Wednesday morning to go over numerous draft-related topics.

Here are five Chargers-related takeaways from Jeremiah:

1. Harbaugh's stamp on the roster

A lot of eyes will be on the Chargers when draft night rolls around in eight days.

The top five picks feature plenty of intrigue, and Chargers General Manager Joe Hortiz and Head Coach Jim Harbaugh sit in a prime position in their first draft with the Bolts.

While the they could stick at No. 5, Jeremiah believes one way Harbaugh could put his stamp in his first draft is to move down and add more picks that could fill in different spots on the roster.

"I think, in an ideal world, they'd like to get out of there," Jeremiah said. "Trade back and get extra picks and build out as many players that fit his vision for the team.

"To me, this makes sense to be kind of a volume draft for them: come away with extra picks and continue to add guys that fit their new physical philosophy of how they want to play the game," the NFL Network analyst added.

Jeremiah hasn't been the only one on board with a Bolts trade down scenario.

Other NFL draft analysts tend to agree with Jeremiah, as nearly a dozen of them have the team accumulating picks and moving back in the latest Chargers Mock Draft Tracker .

There will be a lot of options at No. 5, but Jeremiah pointed to other positions that could be addressed if they do trade down.

"There's been a lot of debate… do they take a receiver? Do they take an offensive lineman? What do they do there at 5? I think the overwhelming preference would be they don't pick at 5," Jeremiah said. "They get out of there and find someone that wants to come up and they continue to fill out the needs on the team.

"Because while we've been focused so much on that side of the ball, they could use a big-time defensive tackle," Jeremiah said. "They could absolutely use another corner. At some point in time they're going to need to add an off-the-ball linebacker."

In his first draft in the powder blue, Harbaugh's impact will be felt not only in Round 1, but in the ones that follow as well.

"They've got a lot of things to get accomplished here," Jeremiah added. "So for him to put his stamp on it, to me it's more about the volume of the players they bring in that fit what he wants to do. That's going to go long after the first round is over."

2. A look at the interior

This year's draft class boasts one of the most talented center classes in years — and that's partly because those at the top can offer much more than just lining up at one spot.

Duke's Graham Barton, Oregon's Jackson Powers-Johnson and West Virginia's Zach Frazier lead the charge there as Jeremiah's top interior offensive linemen.

"Something I've talked to a bunch of teams around the league about is these three guys together," Jeremiah said. "Teams are going through their meetings trying to sort them out.

"I would have it Graham Barton, Jackson Powers-Johnson and then Zach Frazier," Jeremiah added.

With Barton, Jeremiah ranks him the highest due to the fact he could play just about everywhere.

The Duke product was No. 24 overall in his most recent Top 50 list, playing mainly left tackle over the last couple years of his collegiate career.

But he also took over at center during his time with the Blue Devils, and he's someone who the NFL Network analyst believes could be lined up anywhere in the NFL.

"Barton is the best athlete of these three," Jeremiah said. "I think he has legit five-position flexibility. He can move around, and he played left tackle. I think he's best at center but could survive at tackle if you needed him to.

"I think he's fully capable of playing guard as well," Jeremiah added. "He's the best in space, change of direction, just overall athleticism."

Powers-Johnson, who won the Rimington Trophy as the top center in 2023, is Jeremiah's No. 30 overall prospect.

"Powers-Johnson is just bigger at 328 pounds," Jeremiah said. "He's going to set a firm pocket and is a mauler-brawler in the run game. He's not a poor athlete but he's a physical, strong and sturdy presence there in the middle."

Jeremiah remains high on all three and in their ability to contribute from the moment they join their new team.

"I think they're three distinctly different players, but I think all three of them are excellent and all three are ready to start right away," Jeremiah added.

3. Possible 2nd-round tackles

With eight offensive tackles in his top 50, Jeremiah is high on a premium position in the NFL.

But for teams that aren't able to address their tackle need in the first round? The NFL Network analyst remains interested to see how it shakes out past Day 1 and had one name in mind.

"When you start looking at the tackles … that's almost a little bit of no man's land but I'd keep an eye on someone like Jordan Morgan," Jeremiah said of an early second-round target. "He'd probably factor into there. I think all of the other guys will be gone."

There's a natural drop off for a premium position like tackle in the draft, but he named a couple players to keep an eye on that could be impact players at that position if teams don't address it early.

"I like Blake Fisher a lot from Notre Dame," Jeremiah said. "I'm probably going to be a lot higher than a lot of folks, but I think he's got a chance to be a starting right tackle. I think he can kick inside if he had to, but I think he's a tackle.

"I like Christian Jones from Texas as well," Jeremiah added. "Those would be the two names there that I think would be excellent Day 2 guys that are ready to play and really intriguing."

The Chargers hosted their sponsored girls' flag football program, the Conquer Chargers, at Hoag Performance Center, where over 80 girls were in attendance. The group received a tour of the facility, watched film in the team meeting room, and practiced on the team's practice field. The group was welcomed by Chargers head coach Jim Harbaugh and left with new backpacks, slides, hats, headbands, and other customized Chargers gear.

4. Examining WR depth past Round 1

The wide receiver class has been lauded as one of the best in recent memory, with some believing we could see as many as seven receivers taken in the first round.

But because of the number of receivers at the top, Jeremiah believes some could be in for a slide come draft weekend.

"When you look at wideout, I think some of these wideouts get pushed down a little bit just because the sheer number of them," Jeremiah said.

He later added: "It feels like every year there's a couple of these guys that we have pegged as lock first rounders at the wideout position that teams just feel like because of the volume, they can address some other needs and get one later."

Jeremiah had 12 wide receivers ranked in his top 50, including three in the top four with Marvin Harrison, Jr., Rome Odunze and Malik Nabers.

And aside from those consensus first round picks, Jeremiah mentioned some Day 2 names he could see making their way in the top 32.

"[Xavier] Legette's mentioned a little bit talking to people around the league. There's a chance he goes late one," Jeremiah said. "There's a lot of love Ladd McConkey and [Ricky] Pearsall. There're definitely some Xavier Worthy teams."

But if teams look to possibly add a Round 3 wide receiver, Jeremiah threw out a small-school player to watch.

"You might be looking at someone like Malachi Corley, who's a big-time, run-after-the-catch guy out of Western Kentucky," Jeremiah said. "I'm curious where Keon Coleman will go. Some teams feel like he's a late one while other teams feel like he's a third-round pick."

5. Harrison still WR1

Harrison remains the consensus No. 1 receiver on rankings for draft analysts despite not participating in common pre-draft drills like the 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine or his Pro Day.

And Jeremiah laid out the reasoning behind it from the team perspective.

While the common drills are still useful, the development of GPS in-game data over the years has allowed teams to still have a thorough understanding and evaluation of a player.

This comes into play with the Ohio State receiver, as his numbers speak for themselves even without participating in the traditional Combine drills.

"I think the way is what's out there, which is the GPS numbers that you have," Jeremiah said. "It's one of the reasons why I haven't talked to one team, and obviously not all of them are in position to get Marvin Harrison, Jr., but I haven't talked to one team about him not running a 40.

"We have the GPS numbers, they're excellent, "Jeremiah added. "So there's no cause for concern with his in-game speed."

Where those drills come in handy is comparing players over the years, as the data only goes back a certain amount.

But over time, the value of those numbers will increase.

"I think it's still helpful because we don't have the in-game data going all the way back," Jeremiah said. "With something like the 40, it goes back so long and you can compare guys over decades."

Jeremiah later added: "I still think there is some value there until we get more in the inventory of the GPS stuff. Talking to teams, absolutely they rely on that."

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