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2024 NFL draft: 5 defensive backs for Chargers to watch at Combine

The NFL Scouting Combine is in full gear, which will bring the 2024 draft class fully into focus, as this is the week of athletic testing, evaluations, and interviews for over 300 prospects.

With the combine ready to set the stage before free agency and the draft, we look at players worth monitoring for the Chargers.

Whether it be players who are options at pick No. 5 or later in the draft, we will pick out some at each position who should test well and generate buzz.

Here are a few defensive backs worth keeping an eye on.

CB Terrion Arnold, Alabama

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Cornerback isn’t being talked about as much as wide receiver, tight end or offensive tackle. But it is a position the Chargers could end up using their first-round pick on, and Arnold sits atop the players at his position. Arnold is a smooth athlete with speed, fluid hips and explosive traits. I expect him to not only put up some eye-popping numbers but also show out in the on-field drills.

CB Cam Hart, Notre Dame

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Hart is one of the most physically impressive cornerbacks, boasting incredible length and size. For players of his stature, you don’t come across many that are athletically gifted, too, but Hart is. Last summer, it was reported that Hart posted a 134-inch broad jump and 38-inch vertical leap. Hart is an experienced player with 30 starts under his belt and he is versatile in his coverages, something that should appeal to defensive coordinator Jesse Minter.

CB Decamerion Richardson, Mississippi State

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Mississippi State has had three No. 1 corners drafted in the first three rounds (Cameron Dantzler, Martin Emerson and Emmanuel Forbes). Richardson is next in line, and he should only help his stock when he steps on the field on Friday. Richardson, the former sprinter and jumper, is a lengthy corner with the speed and athleticism to turn and stick with receivers down the field.

S Tyler Owens, Texas Tech

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The Chargers are thin at the safety position, so it wouldn’t be surprising to see them snag one at some point in the draft. While he started just one season at Texas Tech, Owens has great traits with his size and speed. Owens was timed at more than 23 miles per hour in a game a season ago and jumped 40 inches in the vertical.

S Malik Mustapha, Wake Forest

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Mustapha is one of the most athletic defensive backs in this draft class and he was represented on Bruce Feldman’s Freak List coming into the 2023 season. Speed and physicality is the name of Mustapha’s game. He can defend the run at a high level and come up and make plays in the open field, something Minter will require from his defensive backs. Additionally, he can help on special teams.

Story originally appeared on Chargers Wire