The Los Angeles Chargers have made some strategic moves in the 2023 NFL Draft, focusing on strengthening their defense by selecting Tuli Tuipulotu, an EDGE from USC, in the second round (54th overall) and Daiyan Henley, an ILB from Washington State, in the third round (85th overall).
Chargers Continue To Invest In Defense
With the addition of Tuli Tuipulotu, the Chargers have ensured that they have a dependable playmaker ready to step in should either Joey Bosa or Khalil Mack be unavailable. Tuipulotu led the Pac-12 last season with 13.5 sacks, demonstrating his ability to put pressure on opposing quarterbacks. As the Chargers tied for 14th in the NFL last season with 40 sacks, the selection of Tuipulotu addresses one of their most pressing needs.
In the third round, the Chargers chose Daiyan Henley, a linebacker with solid instincts and short-area burst. His ability to make plays in the backfield and cover tight ends down the seam will be a valuable asset for the team. The Chargers have not yet made a decision on the fifth-year option for linebacker Kenneth Murray Jr., and the addition of Henley could signal that Murray’s time with the team may be limited. Henley will have the opportunity to learn from veteran linebacker Eric Kendricks, who was signed by the Chargers in free agency, and contribute on special teams, this pick also helps fill the void left by Drue Tranquil who left to join the Kansas City Chiefs.
Looking forward, the Chargers still have concerns regarding depth at the tight end position. The team may also look to address depth at cornerback and safety positions, especially with J.C. Jackson continuing to rehab from a season-ending knee injury.
Overall, the Los Angeles Chargers have made some calculated moves in the 2023 NFL Draft, addressing their defensive needs by selecting Tuli Tuipulotu and Daiyan Henley. These key additions should provide the team with depth and a stronger foundation for the upcoming season.