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2018 NFL Mock Draft: Los Angeles Chargers bolster defensive line

With the 17th overall pick in the 2018 Bleeding Green Nation community mock draft, Los Angeles Chargers GM LBCeaglesFan! selects ...

NCAA Football: Sugar Bowl-Alabama vs Clemson Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

Da’Ron Payne, DT, Alabama

Do we prepare for the future? One last ride with El Capitan? Maybe we grab the new face of the franchise? Or gear up for one last run? These are the questions that face the San Diego Los Angeles Chargers. On one hand, they have a chance and arguably the most dynamic quarterback since Michael Vick which we remember fondly OR address one of the bigger issues that faces this team, the line play. Looking at the division, the Raiders have overpaid for a coach who is average, or better yet has a lower winning percentage than Jason Garrett and Chuck Pagano. The Chiefs have given the reigns to a rookie quarterback who in college had more losses than wins and worse he’s an air raid quarterback, there is only one air raid QB who was successful, and it wasn’t Kevin Kolb. Denver thinks they are a quarterback away and Keenum is it and they are wrong on both accounts. In other words, I believe the division is up for grabs.

Lamar Jackson, sitting behind a hall of fame quarterback, will have time to learn and understand the NFL. He has the tools, has a live arm, great speed. Clearly, he is an elite playmaker with his arm and legs. He has the resume; the awards are vast:

► Heisman Trophy winner (nation’s best player)

► Maxwell Award winner (nation’s best player)

► Walter Camp National Player of the Year

► Associated Press National Player of the Year

► Sporting News National Player of the Year

► Consensus first-team All-American (AP, FWAA, Walter Camp Football Foundation, AFCA, The Sporting News, USA TODAY, ESPN, Sports Illustrated.)

► ACC Player of the Year (media and coaches)

► ACC Offensive Player of the Year (media and coaches)

► Davey O’Brien Trophy finalist (nation’s best quarterback)

► Manning Award finalist (nation’s best quarterback)

► Three-time Walter Camp National Offensive Player of the Week (first-ever)

Lamar Jackson, given the right tools and weapons will dominate this league. But the chargers won’t give it to him.

Last year the Chargers hired failed head coach/successful defensive coordinator Gus Bradley and the impact was noticed. They became the 3rd best passing defense (jumping from 20th). They forced 27 turnovers leading them to 3rd best turnover ratio in the league (Even better than the super bowl champs, remind me who they were). On offense Philip Rivers turned in another top 10 QB performance. The problem? They are soft in the middle. They couldn’t run the ball. They gave up the 2nd most rushing yards and the most rushing yards per carry. Charmin soft. Can’t win with these soft gooey insides.

The addressed it on the offensive line with Mike Pouncey. And now with the 17th pick of the draft, the Chargers take Da’ron Payne, DT from Alabama.


► Incredible athlete for a big, thick defender

► Explosive defender

► Rare speed and explosion for a nose tackle

► Superb run defender

► Impossible to move at the point of attack

► Instinctive

► Skilled at batting passes

► Excellent run defender

► Very strong

► Can contribute in the pass rush

► Can fire by guards with speed

► Collapses the pocket

► Good motor

► Gives a second effort

► Flies around the field

► Perfect fit as a 3-4 nose tackle

► Good fit as a 4-3 tackle

► Eats up double teams

► Closes well for a heavy tackle

► Ability to shed blocks

► Frees up edge rushers, linebackers

► Plays with good leverage


► Didn’t rush the passer much in college

► Needs more pass-rushing moves

“House of Payne” is a chiseled defensive tackle who thrives as block-shedding two-gapper. Has good hand quickness with may also help in the pass rush game. He will command double teams to allow the rest of the defensive line to make plays.

As large and strong as he is, he impressed with a 4.95 2nd fastest for a DT. Combining that speed with his raw strength, he will give Gus that anchor in the middle, like he had when he coached the Seahawks. I wonder who was the DT on the super bowl team.

If you haven’t heard Corey Liuget will be suspended for the first four games of the season. If only there was a player like him in this draft. Maybe 87%-88% like him to fill in and eventually improve on the player that he is. Payne can be that and more. Payne can be that anchor to fix a porous Charger run defense. He can allow Bosa and Ingram to see less double teams. That can be an elite defensive line. And we all know what that can bring.


Do you approve of this pick?

This poll is closed

  • 83%
    (159 votes)
  • 16%
    (32 votes)
191 votes total Vote Now

2018 BGN Community Mock Draft Order

1) Browns (GMinTraining): Saquon Barkley

2) Giants (ablesser88): Quenton Nelson

3) Jets (20Safety_Hazards): Sam Darnold

4) Browns (MJ1893): Josh Rosen

5) Broncos (drc242): Baker Mayfield

6) Colts (I Need a Username): Bradley Chubb

7) Buccaneers (dunc123): Minkah Fitzpatrick

8) Bears (NVEagleShark): Tremaine Edmunds

9) 49ers (Doug Pederson’s Pair of Balls): Calvin Ridley

10) Raiders (Milehighbirds): Derwin James

11) Dolphins (danishdynamite_): Roquan Smith

12) Bills (LAOJoe): Denzel Ward

13) Washington (Eagle1987): Vita Vea

14) Packers (89Tremaine): Mike Hughes

15) Cardinals (RimoDawkins): Josh Allen

16) Ravens (PhillyEagles2011): Mike McGlinchey

17) Chargers (LBCeaglesFan!): Da’Ron Payne

18) Seahawks (KEZHOG):

19) Cowboys (Brawnybalboa):

20) Lions (dshelton5):

21) Bengals (Palaniappan K M):

22) Bills (BeamerWentzorBentley):

23) Patriots (jy1187):

24) Panthers (dceagles):

25) Titans (ei78):

26) Falcons (SakPrescott):

27) Saints (MidMajorMatt):

28) Steelers (SummersInVA):

29) Jaguars (RecarTabmok):

30) Vikings (AnthroEagle):

31) Patriots (PhilaWolverine):

32) Eagles (JALupowitz):

Now it’s time for you to vote for who YOU think the Chargers should pick in the 2018 BGN Consensus Mock Draft.

1) Browns: Saquon Barkley

2) Giants: Sam Darnold

3) Jets: Josh Rosen

4) Browns: Josh Allen

5) Broncos: Baker Mayfield

6) Colts: Bradley Chubb

7) Buccaneers: Minkah Fitzpatrick

8) Bears: Quenton Nelson

9) 49ers: Tremaine Edmunds

10) Raiders: Derwin James

11) Dolphins: Roquan Smith

12) Bills: Lamar Jackson

13) Washington: Vita Vea

14) Packers: Denzel Ward

15) Cardinals: Mason Rudolph

16) Ravens: Mike McGlinchey

17) Chargers:


Who should the Chargers pick at No. 17 overall?

This poll is closed

  • 67%
    Da’Ron Payne
    (78 votes)
  • 6%
    Calvin Ridley
    (7 votes)
  • 11%
    Leighton Vander Esch
    (13 votes)
  • 6%
    Connor Williams
    (7 votes)
  • 3%
    Justin Reid
    (4 votes)
  • 6%
    Marcus Davenport
    (7 votes)
116 votes total Vote Now

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