The San Diego Chargers are about $6.4 million under the salary cap heading into the 2013 NFL Draft, and most of this money will be used to sign draft picks. Meanwhile, San Diego quarterback Philip Rivers will make $17.1 million this season, and has two years left on his deal with cap hits of $15 million and $15.8 million.
The Lighting Bolts needed to improve in multiple areas heading into the off-season, as they ranked 31st in yards per rushing attempt, fourth in sacks allowed and 30th in yards per reception.
Chargers general manager Tom Telesco said that a major deal would not be offered to a free agent this year. If management asked Rivers to restructure his deal, maybe a big name free agent would have signed. Wes Welker or Greg Jennings, who signed for $12 million over two years and $45 million over five respectively, would have been a great fit on San Diego and Rivers would have an elite receiver.
San Diego’s front office signed veteran offensive linemen and I expect the team’s first round pick to be an offensive lineman, so there should be no problems with the offensive line.
Former New England Patriots running back Danny Woodhead agreed to a deal with San Diego last month. However, Ryan Mathews is injury-prone, so a restructured deal could have opened up the possibility of signing Ahmad Bradshaw, who is capable of being a starter in case of injury, to be his backup.
If the front office asked Rivers to restructure his deal, there was a chance that San Diego could have gone after Bradshaw, Jennings or Welker in free agency.