Q: You think we end up making a trade in the draft either to move up or back? – Dave Porvich
A: Every year this question comes in, and every year I answer it the same. Yes, I believe there is a good chance the Bolts make a trade during the draft because history shows it happens more often than not. Of course, last year I was wrong as the team stayed put during each round. Still, that was only the fifth time since 2000 the Chargers didn’t make a trade during the draft, and first in the Tom Telesco era. Interestingly enough, the three times the Chargers executed a trade under Telesco they moved up to get the target they desired. I’m always a fan of moving back to get more picks, but also love seeing the team targeting a guy they believe can make a difference and making sure they get him.
Q: Is Jatavis Brown going to have a bigger role in 2017? – Deshaun Middlebrooks
A: I do expect JB to have a bigger role because it is only natural for players to garner more responsibility in their second season. Brown was one of the top steals in the draft last year, paying major dividends as a fifth round pick out of Akron. I’ll never forget Telesco saying there would have been a revolt in the draft room had they not picked him, nor the how the scouts and coaches’ cell phones were blowing up from other teams telling them how they picked one of their favorite players. His performance last year against the Denver Broncos on Thursday night was one of my favorite memories of the 2016 season. The linebacker delivered as a rookie, but missed a quarter of the season due to injuries. Brown also started only seven games as he adjusted to the pro game. Still, he ranked second on the team with 73 tackles while also recording 3.5 sacks, nine tackles for loss, eight passes defensed and a pair of forced fumbles. Overall, I think it is fair to say the team expects even more from him in 2017.
Q: At what point in the draft do you see us addressing our offensive line? – Andrew De Fazio
A: My answer is the same for every position – whenever there is value and they have the player ranked at the top of their draft board. Telesco has proven to take the top talent regardless of position or need. Like I mentioned last week, I always think back to his first draft in 2013, when wide receiver was the deepest on the roster. Still, Keenan Allen was somehow still available and the team pounced.
Q: What is going on right now on the fields? Practices have begun, right? – Erika Burns
A: The Bolts are back for the start of the offseason program, but it isn’t practice as you might imagine. These first two weeks solely focus on strength, conditioning and physical rehabilitation. Coaches are prohibited from being on the field with the players. It is an important first step to the offseason program as a whole, but if you were to come by the facility, you won’t see traditional football activities. Instead, it is mainly running around and lifting weights.