The Los Angeles Chargers need to trade up to the #1 selection in this year’s draft and select Joe Burrow and here’s why. The Chargers are not the fan favorite in L.A. and that is creating big problems for them. They have struggled to grow a fan base in a city that had been waiting for their beloved Rams to return home for 20 years. The Chargers are trying to help pay for a new stadium right now and need to sell tickets. The only way they are going to start selling tickets and competing with the Rams as the most popular football team in L.A. is if they do something huge to attract a larger fan base. There isn’t a bigger move they could make right now than trading for the right to draft Joe Burrow as their future franchise quarterback. The Chargers are in a unique place right now, as they are moving on from Phillip Rivers the man who was the face of their franchise for the last 14 years. Unfortunately, Rivers was never able to bring a championship to the Chargers, and thus has hindered the Chargers ability to grow their fan base. If the Chargers want to show people they are committed to winning championships, yes plural, then they need to trade up and draft Joe Burrow.
Joe Burrow is a winner. He thrives off the competitive nature that football provides. He showed everyone that he is a winner this season, leading LSU to a 15-0 season, arguably the greatest season any college football team has had in the history of college football. Burrow has also made it very clear in the last few weeks that he wants to play for a team committed to winning. He has not yet been willing to link his name to the Cincinnati Bengals in this year’s draft. Last month Joe Burrow was being interviewed on the Dan Patrick Show and Dan asked, “is being (drafted) number one or going to the right team the most important to you?” In response Joe Burrow stated, “Combination of both, you know, you want to go number one overall, but you also want to go to a great organization that’s committed to winning, committed to winning Super Bowls.” Burrow could have said that he wants to go to a team committed to winning, and that if the Bengals are committed to winning then I would love to go to the Bengals. Instead Burrow intentionally did not mention the Cincinnati Bengals as a place he would like to be drafted. I believe this is because he has seen the Bengals track record the last 20 years. They haven’t won a playoff game in Joe Burrow’s lifetime. Do you really think he wants to play for a team like that?
Instead if he went to the L.A. Chargers, he would have the ability to compete for a championship in year one of his NFL career. They were the 11th best team at protecting the quarterback last season and have a multitude of offensive weapons, especially if they re-sign a few key free agents. The Chargers have two 1,000-yard receivers under contract for next season in Keenan Allen and Mike Williams. If the Chargers can re-sign Hunter Henry, and one of their top two running backs in Melvin Gordon or Austin Ekeler then the Chargers should have enough fire power on offense to challenge even the best NFL defenses.
A realistic trade offer that I think would convince the Bengals to part ways with the #1 overall pick and make this trade happen, would be if the Chargers sent Cincinnati their #6 and #37 overall picks in this year’s draft. Along with their first and second round picks in the 2021 NFL draft and their 3rd round pick in the 2022 NFL draft. This collection of draft picks was not chosen at random. After looking at what teams have had to trade, in order to move up and get the quarterback they desire in past drafts, this is what I believe it will take to make Joe Burrow a Los Angeles Charger.
These are some past examples of what teams have had to give up in order to select the quarterback they wanted. In 2018 the New York Jets traded up three spots so they could select Sam Darnold. In order to do so, they had to give up their #6 overall pick and three second round picks, two of which were 2018 second round picks. In 2017 the Chicago Bears traded up one spot to draft Mitchell Trubisky and had to give up the #3 overall pick along with two 3rd round picks and a 4th round pick. In 2016 the Los Angeles Rams traded up seven spots with the Tennessee Titans to select Jared Goff #1 overall. In order to do so the Rams sent the #8 overall pick along with two second round picks, two third round picks, and the Rams 2017 first round pick. So in all, to move up seven spots for the #1 overall pick in the draft (along with the Titans 4th & 6th round picks) the Rams gave up two first, two second, and two third round picks. In that same draft the Eagles traded up from #15 overall to #2 overall in the NFL Draft so they could select Carson Wentz. In order to do so, they ended up giving up: two firsts, a second, third and fourth round pick. Lastly in 2012 the Washington Redskins traded up 12 spots to select Robert Griffin III #2 overall. In order to do that the Redskins gave up three first round picks and a second-round pick to make it happen.
All this to say that it costs a lot of draft capitol to trade up to a top draft pick, especially #1 overall, and with the Chargers needing to move up 5 spots in the draft to have the #1 overall pick it’s going to take a lot. This also was to show that this does happen a lot when a team falls in love with a quarterback and is willing to do anything to go up and get him. If the Chargers love Joe Burrow, think he is the best quarterback in this class, and can lead their franchise to its first Super Bowl victory ever then they need to make this deal, no matter the cost.
In conclusion I Believe it is in the Chargers best interests to trade up in the draft so they can acquire Joe Burrow. The real question is whether the Bengals will be willing to listen to offers on their #1 overall pick in this draft, and whether Joe Burrow will try and make a power play to keep from getting drafted by the Cincinnati Bengals. He should probably be calling John Elway and Eli Manning for advice right about now, so that he doesn’t end up playing for the Cincinnati Bengals this fall.