Here are five top lessons learned after attending the 2019 NFL Scouting Combine:
1. Fearless Bolts – Before delving into the prospects and draft news, let's talk about the buzz surrounding the Bolts in Indy. More to the point, let's talk about the non-stop praise the team garnered as pundits couldn't help but gush when asked about the Chargers. That's to be expected after L.A. posted a 12-4 season, tied for the top record in the AFC. So, what do the Bolts need to do to get over the hump? Well, not much if you ask the experts, who said only minor tinkering is required. Highlights of what those in the know had to say about the Bolts include their fearless attitude and Head Coach Anthony Lynn’s leadership.
2. With the 28th Overall Selection – With the Chargers needing only to reinforce the roster they have in place, pundits noted how there is no glaring need the team needs to address in the draft. Thus, they are in the envious position to draft best player available when they are on the clock with the 28th overall pick. However, they did note that the team needs to make moves at defensive line based on roster dynamics. Corey Liuget, Brandon Mebane, Darius Philon and Damion Square's contracts expire at the start of the new league year. Thus, whether it's through signing free agents, bringing back those whose contracts are expiring or through the draft, they emphasized the Chargers are set to make some moves in the trenches. Speaking of which….
3. Dynamite D-Linemen – Experts have said all along that the defensive line is the premiere position in this year's draft. They weren't kidding! The group posted mind-boggling numbers, showing not only why many expect more defensive linemen to go in the first round than any position, but also depth throughout the draft to produce impact players in the later rounds. As for individual standouts, Mississippi State's Montez Sweat turned heads in a major way when he ran a 4.41 40-yard dash at 6-6, 260-pounds. Alabama's Quinnen Williams, who some think may be the first player taken come draft day, also flashed rare athleticism while Michigan's Rashan Gary showed why many believe he'll terrorize offenses for years to come.
4. D.K. Metcalf Steals the Show – Let's pivot to some non-Chargers news from the Combine. No one, and I mean no one, earned more buzz throughout the week than D.K. Metcalf. The chiseled Ole Miss wideout had already gone viral thanks to his impressive physique, but his athleticism was off the charts. After posting the most reps on the bench press of any wide receiver (27), Metcalf ran a blistering 4.33 40-yard dash, showcasing freakish athleticism that earned him Julio Jones comparisons. Prepare to hear a lot about the 6-3, 228-pounder over the next seven weeks.
5. Devins Dominate – General Manager Tom Telesco said in his year-end press conference that the team will address the linebacker spot this offseason. So, who stood out at the position at the Combine? Well, a pair of Devins stole the spotlight in Michigan's Devin Bush and LSU's Devin White. Bush posted a ridiculous 4.43 time in the 40 while checking all the other boxes during agility tests. Meanwhile, White bested that mark by a hair, clocking in at 4.42. Moreover, the LSU star made the on-field portions look so easy that many pundits believe he now has a chance to go in the top five.
The opinions, analysis and/or speculation expressed above represent those of individual authors and do not represent the opinions or policies of the Chargers' organization, front office staff, coaches and executives.