Predicting San Diego Chargers’ 5 Biggest Free Agency Moves
Predicting the San Diego Chargers' 5 Biggest Free Agency Moves
In the middle of February, not much is new on the San Diego Chargers front. The Super Bowl was already two weeks ago and there is a lot of time until the Chargers play a snap in August. NFL free agency begins March 11, and the Chargers have work to do on their roster.
The Chargers have a new offensive staff with Frank Reich as the offensive coordinator, taking over for Ken Whisenhunt. In reality, Reich might be a mere face to Mike McCoy's play-calling on gameday.
The Chargers don’t have much cap space available and should expect to have around $6 million available to spend on players. The team's biggest move this week was signing Cordarro Law to a reserve/futures contract, so at least the Chargers are trying to find talent in cheaper places.
Even though the Chargers have seven picks in the upcoming NFL Draft, Tom Telesco has to upgrade almost the entire roster. Telesco’s goal is have the Chargers' draft picks match the productivity of their last year’s crop, though the team still needs to reap value from fifth-rounder CB Steve Williams.
No matter the situation in this draft, expect the Chargers to address their anemic secondary with their high draft picks because they Chargers do not want to gamble cash on Derek Cox-like free agents.
I’ve previously written specifically about some free agents who they should target and might be available at a good price. This list doesn’t comprise of all defensive players as they need upgrades elsewhere. The Chargers have impending free agents they would like to re-sign such as Donald Butler and OG Rich Ohrnberger, but the depth is questionable both at running back and wide receiver.
There is still much that can happen between now and the draft, but here are five predictions for the biggest Chargers free agency moves this offseason.
5, Re-sign Donald Butler
This guy is their homegrown product who has delivered as a middle linebacker. Manti Te’o isn't ready to take over, and Butler is the hot hand for McCoy’s offense. He stays.
4. Sign a Change-of-Pace Back
LeGarrette Blountis my personal choice for the change-of-pace back that can really take the load off from Ryan Mathews, but Donald Brown and Toby Gerhart could be those guys as well and be signed for cheap.
3. Cut Derek Cox
The Chargers won't pay him to sit on the bench.
2. Sign Josh Cribbs
The Chargers need a kick returner, so they might make a play at Dexter McCluster, but I expect someone not named Keenan Allen to take back kicks. Josh Cribbs returned more kicks than Danny Woodhead in 2013 and with the questionable depth at WR this year, Cribbs could make plays on offense too.
1. Sign Brian Orakpo
Pass rush, pass rush, pass rush. The Chargers have issues at defense, but they need a legitimate threat in the pass rush to free up Melvin Ingram. The Chargers need ferocity in the front seven.