What Are The Los Angeles Chargers’ Team Needs In The 2022 NFL Draft?

The 2022 NFL Draft starts on Thursday, April 28. As a lead-up to the draft, we’ll be giving a team-by-team breakdown for positional needs. For each team, we’ll give an overview of the current depth chart and how big of a need each position is in the upcoming draft. You can find the rest of the team needs (as they’re updated) and the rest of our draft content in the 2022 NFL Draft hub.

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What Picks do the Los Angeles Chargers have in 2022

The Los Angeles Chargers have 10 picks.

Round 1 (17)
Round 3 (79)
Round 4 (123)
Round 5 (160)
Round 6 (195)
Round 6 (214)
Round 7 (236)
Round 7 (254)
Round 7 (255)
Round 7 (260)

Los Angeles Chargers Top POSITIONS OF NEED

  1. RT
  2. RG
  3. EDGE depth
  4. Secondary depth
  5. Speed

Los Angeles Chargers Strength of Schedule, 2022

The Los Angeles Chargers have the third hardest NFL strength of schedule for the 2022 NFL season.

Los Angeles Chargers Offense

By Rich Hribar


Justin Herbert
Chase Daniel
Easton Stick

Coming off 5,014 yards and 38 passing touchdowns in 2021, Justin Herbert is the first player in NFL history to start his career with 30 touchdown passes in his first two seasons. 

Herbert still has two more years left at an advantageous salary on his rookie contract. 

Chase Daniel is a capable veteran backup, covering everything the Chargers need here at the position. 


Austin Ekeler
Josh Kelley
Larry Rountree

Austin Ekeler is one of the best combo backs in the league. In 2021, Ekeler turned a career-high 276 touches into 1,558 yards and 20 touchdowns. Ekeler of course was an asset in the passing game, catching 70 passes for 647 yards and eight touchdowns, but finally given the opportunity to carry more rushing work, he rushed for a career-high 911 yards and 12 touchdowns. This after scoring nine rushing touchdowns over his first four years in the league.

The Chargers have still been searching for a compliment to Ekeler, with neither Joshua Kelley nor Larry Rountree popping the past two seasons as day three picks. 

With the 200-pound Ekeler still only averaging 12.9 carries per game, the Chargers could once again pursue a bigger-body again here for a third straight season. 

Justin Jackson also still remains a free agent that could be brought back. Jackson averaged a career-high 6.0 yards per touch in 2021.


Keenan Allen
Mike Williams
Josh Palmer
Deandre Carter
Jalen Guyton
Jason Moore
Joe Reed
Maurice Ffrench
Michael Bandy

Keenan Allen is as steady as they come, catching over 6.0 receptions per game in each of his past six seasons in which he has played multiple games. He has 97 or more receptions in each of his past five seasons.

Allen turns 30 this April, but he has a playstyle that will keep him viable with attachment to Herbert for the final stretch of his apex if he finishes his contract with the Chargers. Allen is signed through 2024, but only carries dead cap hits of $6.9 million and $2.7 million after the 2022 campaign. 

The Chargers brought back Mike Williams on a three-year contract after a breakout season. 

Williams set career-highs in targets (129), receptions (76), and yardage (1,146) to go along with nine touchdowns. 

After Allen and Williams, the only other wideout here signed beyond this season is Josh Palmer. In the three games that Palmer got on the field for 60% or more of the snaps as a rookie, he posted games of 5-66-1 (seven targets), 5-43-1 (six targets), and 4-45-1 (nine targets).

The Chargers are strong up top at the position, but with Allen’s age and contract flexibility, insurance can be added here, while the team still needs to add more overall speed to this unit.


Gerald Everett
Tre McKitty
Donald Parham
Gabe Nabers
Hunter Kampmoyer

The Chargers used their tight ends often in 2021, with the position ranking ninth in the NFL in targets (131), 10th in receptions (90), 11th in yards (964), and ninth in touchdowns (eight) as a group. 

Jared Cook led the group with 48-564-4 on 83 targets, but still remains a free agent. The team replaced Cook with Gerald Everett, who posted a 48-478-4 line in his first season in the turtle-paced Seattle passing game.

The Chargers still have Donald Parham and last year’s third-round pick Tre McKitty as depth and contributors. 

While not anchored by a star tight end, the Chargers have capable players and athletes at the position to not force the issue unless they love a specific prospect. 


LT: Rashawn Slater/Trey Pipkins
LG: Matt Fieler/Ryan Hunter
C: Corey Linsley
RG: Brenden Jaimes
RT: Strom Norton/Foster Sarell

The Chargers closed the 2021 season 13th in ESPN’s Pass Block Win Rate (61%) and 16th in collective pas blocking grade per Pro Football Focus. 

The team was aggressive last offseason in re-working the line, adding Rashawn Slater, Matt Fieler, and Corey Linsey as starters. 

Slater played 100% of the snaps as a rookie, closing the year as the eight-best tackle in overall grade per Pro Football Focus. He allowed a 3.7% pressure rate, which ranked 10th among 95 tackles to log over 100 snaps in pass protection. 

Feiler and Linsey also delivered as free agent signings. Feiler played 100% of the team snaps and graded out 12th among guards per Pro Football Focus while Linsey played 95% of the snaps and was second in grade among centers.

All three of those players are signed for multiple seasons, but they also are the only linemen signed past this season outside of last year’s fifth-round pick Brenden Jaimes. 

Left to middle, the Chargers are set with front-end starters, but the right side needs work.

The team was pressed into relying on Strom Norton at right tackle with Bryan Bulaga appearing in just one game. Norton allowed an 8.8% pressure rate, ranking 83rd among tackles, while his nine sacks allowed were tied for the third-most at the position. Norton is only signed for the 2022 season.

Last year’s starting right guard Michael Schofield still remains unsigned. The team selected Jaimes in the fifth round last year as interior depth, but Jaimes only managed five snaps as a rookie. 

Not only looking for players to compete for immediate starting jobs on the right side, but the Chargers also have contractual depth needs on the line as well. 

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Los Angeles Chargers Defense

By Dan Pizzuta

Interior Defensive Line

Sebastian Joseph-Day
Austin Johnson
Jerry Tillery
Christian Covington
Breiden Fehoko
Joe Gaziano
Andrew Brown
Forrest Merrill

Few team-player fits made more sense than the Chargers and Sebastian Joseph-Day during the offseason. Joseph-Day established himself as one of the best run-defending linemen in the league with Brandon Staley in 2020. He followed that up in 2021 before an injury cut his season short. That’s a big deal for a defense that ranked 28th in EPA per play against the run last season.

Austin Johnson was another free agent signing to help the run game. After being a part-time player over his first five seasons, Johnson was pushed into a larger role with the Giants in 2021 and played quite well. The 314-pound tackle had seven quarterback hits after a combined six over his first five seasons. He also added six tackles for loss.

Having those two bigger bodies could potentially make better use of Jerry Tillery, who ranked 21st among defensive tackles in pressure rate last seaason but has struggled to stop the run throughout his career. 


Joey Bosa
Khalil Mack
Emeke Egbule
Chris Rumph II
Jamal Davis II

Joey Bosa ranked eighth among edge rushers in pressure rate last season as he played 16 games for the third time in his career. Bosa was also one of the best run defenders at edge, ranked 10th in Run Stop Win Rate, though his tackles for loss dropped to five after 18 and 15 the previous two seasons.

The first aggressive move for the Chargers this offseason was to bring in Khalil Mack. Mack only played seven games in 2021 but he’s been one of the best all-around edge rushers throughout his career. When he was on the field, Mack’s pressure rate would have been about top 20 for 2021 and in 2020 he was also a top run defender — fifth in Run Stop Win Rate.

Behind Bosa and Mack, there’s not much. That could open up some possibilities for a mid-round edge for depth.

Off-ball Linebacker

Kenneth Murray
Drue Tranquill
Troy Reeder
Amen Obongbemiga
Damon Lloyd
Nick Niemann
Cole Chirstiansen

The Chargers have used resources at linebacker, though the production hasn’t completely been there. Now in this system, the position also isn’t as valuable, especially now that the team has beefed up the defensive line.

Kenneth Murray, a 2020 first-round pick, only played 11 games and didn’t really make much of an impact when he was on the field. Drue Tranquill, a 2019 fourth-round pick, was one of the better coverage linebackers in the league last season. He ranked second among 85 linebackers in yards allowed per coverage snap.

Troy Reeder brings scheme knowledge, but last season the Rams spent the year scheming around him.


J.C. Jackson
Asante Samuel Jr.
Michael Davis
Tevaughn Campbell
Kemon Hall

J.C. Jackson gives the Chargers a No. 1 corner that allows them to completely shift their coverage schemes. Jackson has been one of the league’s best man corners with a repeatable ability to take the ball away. Jackson was sixth among 93 cornerbacks in Adjusted Yards allowed per coverage snap, which accounts for touchdowns and interceptions.

Asante Samuel Jr. was 41st among those cornerbacks in Adjusted Yards allowed per coverage snap, which is impressive for a rookie. Samuel played on the outside as a rookie, but there is some talk of moving him inside more often in Year 2.

Michael Davis was 52nd in Adjusted Yards allowed per coverage snap and serves as a good enough player to start but also not keep the Chargers from potentially upgrading at that spot.


Derwin James
Nasir Adderley
Alohi Gilman
Mark Webb
Ben DeLuca

Derwin James came back from a 2020 torn ACL and started to show his potential in Brandon Staley’s defense. There should be a ton of optimism for Year 2.

Nasir Adderly played 85% of the defensive snaps. He continued to develop as a deep safety and the scheme opened him up more to play downhill. As a 2019 second-round pick, Adderley is in the final year of his rookie contract.

This could be another spot here the Chargers add some depth behind the top two starters.

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