With Shawne Merriman possibly having played his last game in the Blue & Gold, the Chargers are in sore need of depth at the position. They drafted a similar player in the first round last year in Larry English, but this pick could create match-up nightmares for opposing offensive coordinators.
Both English and Hughes were defensive ends in college, and neither has shown enough to be considered every-down players at OLB. However, both have a knack for getting to the quarterback, and could possibly rotate between OLB and DE in order to find ways to get both of them onto the field at the same time.
When combined with underrated OLB Shaun Phillips, the Chargers could be looking at a fearsome trifecta of pass-rushers.
Other Possibilities: If the Chargers are unable to get their RB in the first round, they would likely consider trading up to get a player like Fresno State's Mathews, who looks to be the last of the starting quality RBs in this draft.
Alabama DT Terrence Cody would also be tempting due to Jamal Williams' health and advancing age, but on a team already so lacking in discipline, the Chargers would have to be concerned about adding a player who cannot get into any sort of shape other than round. He has the potential to be a dominant force on the defensive line, but unless he proves to scouts at the NFL Combine that he is capable of maintaining his weight, the smart choice would be for the Chargers to pass over him at this point in the draft.