If Grice is Nice, then who’s Mathews?

Rookie Running back from ASU, drafted to San Diego Charger 2014 in the 6th round

Rookie Running back from ASU, drafted to San Diego Charger 2014 in the 6th round

6/5/2014 – by James Fedewa

The San Diego Chargers signed free agent running back Donald Brown this off season, who had a very good finale with the Colts last year, outperforming the newly acquired Trent Richardson. Brown was highly effective last season and was clearly the best running back on the Colts team, beating out Richardson.

The Chargers also drafted running back Marion Grice last month, out of Arizona State in the sixth round.  Grice (6’ 207 lbs.) is a very talented, good young running back prospect who might be a very capable backup for the Chargers.  Grice is considered a “silent steal” in the 6th round of the draft for the Chargers and was projected to go a lot earlier than the 6th round. Grice is expected to earn some solid playing time this season, but at the moment, he is buried on the depth chart, and last in line.

If Grice has a great camp and preseason, current Chargers starter Ryan Mathews should be very worried about his job in San Diego.  Although, Mathews had a great year last season for the Chargers, plus he is in a contract year this season, which can be very motivational for a new contract; but…

What if an Adrian Peterson, or a DeMarco Murray, or a Matt Forte has a season ending injury tomorrow? Or any “prized” running back in the NFL gets hurt before the season starts? What would that “injury” be willing to offer (or demand) in a trade for, say… running back Ryan Mathews?

Not that Ryan Mathews is on the trading block, but could Mathews command a “first round draft pick” in a trade (like the Colts offer for Richardson)? Or what if Miami, DC or Tennessee offered a nice deal for Ryan Mathews that the Chargers could not refuse? It is early, but currently, San Diego seems to be stacked at the position.

Could Donald Brown carry the load as the primary starting running back for the Chargers in 2014; with Woodhead, Grice and Branden Oliver backing him up?

What would it take to pry Mathews from the Chargers? Probably too much, and of course, all pending on Marion Grice’s early camp and preseason.

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Tags: Danny Woodhead Marion Grice Ryan Mathews San Diego Chargers

  • Nick619chargers4life

    Well if were doing a rap song and if Grice is nice then Mathews must be old news . On a serious tip , what would it take to pry Mathews from the chargers? I would have to say another injury to Mathews . Plain and simple .

  • ECAVILLE/Ace of Spades

    The Matthews Blues, Grice is Nice, Brown gets Down, Go ahead Woodhead, All over her Oliver⚡⚡⚡⚡⚡⚡⚡

    • Nick619chargers4life


  • John Alton

    Don’t make me laugh, Grice needs to have a great camp and preseason just to make the roster on special teams. This is the NFL not the PAC 12. I am not sold on Grice. He still has to earn a spot on the roster. Whatever he did in college dosn’t mean shit. One thing he will not do, is beat out Mathews for the starting job. McCoy is not going to dump Mathews.

    • jamfed

      LOL – yes, you’re right. I don’t think Grice is a starter over Mathews, but I think Donald Brown could. I think Grice could take Ronnie Browns old spot (currently being held by Donald Brown).
      Watch the 2013 Wisconsin vs. Arizona State game. Grice did well…

    • Nick619chargers4life

      I’m not disagreeing with you , but we do have brown and he is better in the open space then Mathews . RB don’t carry much value these days . Mathews let us down in the playoffs last year , im tired of the disappointments he brings. We are back by committee , Mathews could be in or out now that we have brown , it doesn’t really matter to me anymore lol IMO

      • jamfed

        Mathews has all the qualitities you want in a workhorse RB, except vision. A runner like him should have some longer runs, yet he doesn’t. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a HUGE Mathews fan, but I’m also a realist that thinks all positions can be upgraded, regardless of contract status.
        It’s simple, if Mathews can warrant a 2nd round draft pick, i’d take it…

  • Mark Viguri

    Yup this is Ryans last year in a Chargers uni. Chargers can’t lose since Mathews will need to have a great year then they can switch to Brown and Grice in the playoffs as soon as Matthews gets hurt or fumbles again.

    • Nick619chargers4life

      Encore Encore !!

  • Mark Viguri

    Mathews getting hurt in the playoff game vs. the Broncos was huge that and Shaun Phillips in a Donks uni are the 2 main reasons why Denver got past San Diego. With Phillips a Panther and Telesco loading up on quality running backs with Brown and Grice to go along with Mathews and Woodhead is just another reason why Telesco looks like he’s going to be a very good GM.

    • Jack Huber

      Nah, the main reason for losing to the Donks was bleepin’ Whisenhunt spending the week before the game interviewing for a HC job instead of focusing on the PLAYOFF task at hand

      • Joel Ayala

        Fxxken Whizencunt

  • Gunnar Martin

    Man, crazy how much disrespect Ryan gets after a career year.

    • jamfed

      Disrespect or entitlement? Career years can only benefit Mathews, regardless of what team he is on…

      • Diegoblue

        Yeah benefit the Chargers…

    • Michael Popowich

      Agreed, why would he go anywhere, we need him, Grice is a rookie, and there if Mathews doesn’t play well, or is injured. The more weapons the better, why trade him after such a great year, which would mean he is getting better.

      • jamfed

        I’m not sure you’ll find a bigger Ryan Mathews fan than me. He’s from Bakersfield, I’m from Bakersfield. He went to Fresno State, and I went there (for a quarter, i’m a CSUB grad). So, I’m rootin’ for Mathews. I’m just saying what if Grice looks amazing in camp and the preseason and a team offers TT a huge trade?

    • http://www.BoltBeat.com/ Peter Thompson


  • I_Bleed_Powder_Blue_801

    I like where you are going with this… I’d take a trade for him in a heart beat… SD could use more draft picks

  • jamfed

    …a buddy of mine says: 3rd rounder at best for Mathews… Richardson sucking last year also will scare any GM from a 1st round pick trade (unless it is AP).

  • ECAVILLE/Ace of Spades

    I have a lot of respect for Ryan Matthews but if he could be traded for something substantial than I’m all for it. Either way he will have a BEAST of a season, preferably with Lightning BOLTS on his shoulders!

  • Tazzster

    I doubt he will be traded.

    From my perspective all Telesco has done is add depth to the roster. Matthews and Woodhead both bring different skills to the game. We now have a decent back up for Matthews and a potential back up for Woodhead.

    My guess is Grice makes the roster as Woodheads backup and a punt returner…. If he comes as advertised.

    In addition, with both Matthews and Woodhead slated to be free agents next year, If Brown and Grice pan out, there is nodesperate need to drop BIG money on Matthews or Woodhead to keep them.

    • jamfed

      I agree with you, nice analysis. Trades are very rare these days and it’s amazing what a team can do in reaction to an injury (like what happened to Vick Ballard last year in Indy).

  • RZ

    Grice is nice if you need a bench warmer….Mathews is the starter if you want a game day Mauler!

  • Sergio Quintero

    Power runners with a tendency to get hurt basically have little to no trade value, there is too much risk for a quick decline. I expect Mathews to be starter this year, they will limit his carries to not exceed 20-22 in a game.

    Mathews future is either he has a huge season that knocks the socks off the chargers, or they let him hit the open market and they probably offer him a very similar contract to the one Brown already has, and there is a very real possibility that the chargers don’t offer him a contract and simply move Brown into the starters spot in 2015, and bring in a RB from the draft to take the Brown role.

  • philiprules

    Definitely the new Bolt Beat crazy train writer.

    • jamfed

      who me?
      …it’s been over a year…