What do you all think AJ Smith has planned for Mike Tolbert?
Tolbert is the vulture down at the goal line and is used as our 3rd down back on offense. He is a much better blocker in the pass game than Ryan Mathews is and is good insurance if Mathews goes down with an injury (and that happens too often). There will be other teams that will be looking to add the bruising back onto their roster and he could find more playing time with other teams.
Should he be one of the players that the Chargers work to re-sign? Will other teams interest raise up his price tag?
As for my opinion, Tolbert won’t be worth the possible price tag for another season. Our depth at the position is thin, but I am sure that we can find another big bodied back that can chug for a couple of yards per carry.
He is the 3rd-down back on this team only because we lost Darren Sproles. He was the only option that we had on the team. He is not a threat to gain a big chunk of yards on 3rd down, but he is the best pass blocking back that was available.
Sometimes I even question his ability to get the job done in short yardage. On short yardage runs, he can only take the ball up the middle because he doesn’t have the wheels to bounce it outside. The defense usually stacks the middle of the field on short yardage situations on him and clog all the holes.
There should be a few options available in free agency that we could bring in that could be the 3rd-down back that we need (Justin Forsett, Steve Slaton, Jerious Norwood) OR someone to be the vulture down at the goal line (LeRon McClain). They would probably come at a cheaper price than keeping Tolbert around.