It was announced late yesterday that the first of some expected contract restructurings was put into motion. The Chargers needed to free up some money to pay for Donald Butler’s shiny new contract, which was announced earlier in the day. To make some room, the Chargers & wide receiver Eddie Royal came to a contract agreement. Royal was due to make a lopsided amount of money, and was being talked about as a possible cap casualty. Although the details of the contract restructure have not been released, this is good news for a wide receiving corps that is having a hard time fielding healthy talent.
Eddie Royal is a speedy little guy who can get open, make big plays, and score points. He struggled to keep on the field last season, due to a toe injury. He fought through the pain, and got out there as much as he could, even if it meant missing multiple practices. Mike McCoy & company played it wisely by letting him sit, and not aggravating that toe injury. Royal made some clutch catches last season, and looked more like the guy we thought he could be when AJ Smith signed him. He battled a nagging hamstring in his first season as a Charger, and the offensive line problems didn’t help either. Philip was skittish, constantly running for his life, and had possibly his worst season ever. After McCoy & Whisenhunt got the offense back on track, Royal seemed to flourish. He was the hottest receiver on the team coming out of training camp, and he looked like it early in the season.
Mike McCoy has worked with Eddie in Denver, and it looks like they will be working together for the unforeseeable future. Keeping Royal around adds an element of speed & explosiveness to the team. It also provides much needed consistency for Philip Rivers & our high powered offense. The fact that Tom Telesco was able to put a deal on the table that kept Royal in a Charger uniform, and (hopefully) didn’t hurt the team, speaks volumes about our new GM. He came out swinging last season by releasing unwanted baggage like Gaither & Meachem, and is proving that he is smart enough to retain the talent that is helping the team. This is surely a sign of good things to come this offseason.
I am really excited to see if Royal can stay healthy in 2014! He is a valuable asset to our team, and is a solid contributor when he is on the field. If he could get back to the point where he can start returning some kicks again, he would add even more depth & versatility to the roster. I know that is a pretty big “IF”, but after seeing what he was able to do with a hurt toe, I would love to see what he could do with an “injury-free” season.
I can’t stress how good this is for the team that he is coming back, and for a more realistic price. If an agreement was not reached, it would have been devastating to our receiving corps. It would have been yet another hole to plug & fill. It would have affected the chemistry on our offense, and for Philip Rivers. There is no doubt that depth must be added to the group, but it is nice to know that we have some solid pieces to build upon, moving forward. I am happy Eddie is back, and I can’t wait to see what else Telesco has up his sleeve! We have been getting some pretty good news about our receivers over the last few days… if only we could get some good news about Danario Alexander… that would be the ultimate cherry on top!
Keep Bolting Toward Excellence!