Tom Telesco: You can’t force things with the first-round pick

NFL: FEB 28 Scouting Combine
Getty Images

The Chargers need a left tackle.

After Sam Tevi departed in free agency, head coach Brandon Staley admitted there’s a “hole” that the club had yet to fill. Quarterback Justin Herbert recently said he’s lobbying for the team to draft his former Oregon teammate Penei Sewell, which would likely require a trade up. But General Manager Tom Telesco poured a bit of cold water on that possibility when he talked up Trey Pipkins last week.

So even though there appears to be a clear position of need for Los Angeles, Telesco at least wants to look like he’s keeping his options open with the 13th overall pick.

“You can’t force things,” Telesco said, via Gilbert Manzano of the Los Angeles Daily News. It doesn’t matter if we have a young quarterback or an old quarterback. You have to protect the quarterback. You have to be able to run-block when you have to run-block. It has to be the right player.”

So the Chargers could still move up, stay where they are, or trade back within the first round on Thursday. But at some point, it seems more likely than not that they’ll take an offensive lineman to help protect their young franchise QB.