Free Agent Nose Tackles That Fit the Chargers

By Nick Mansoor

Oct 27, 2013; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Arizona Cardinals quarterback

Carson Palmer

(3) is sacked by Atlanta Falcons defensive tackle

Corey Peters

(91) during the first half at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

So it’s the offseason. The hype for the draft is out the roof; people are making their mocks, and we’re just playing this guessing game. Yes, I’ll admit, I’ve played my fair share, but when you think about it Free Agency is two weeks away… 2 WEEKS!

The Chargers have a lot of holes to fill, and it won’t be easy to fill them all because we are STRAPPED on cash this off-season. There is some good news however, the NFL reported that their will be a bonus to 130 million dollars for team salary caps this offseason. This gives Tom Telesco a huge sigh of relief, it’s not much, but it will give us some more breathing room.

Our biggest team needs are primarily on defense this year, and our stats from last season proved that. We ranked DEAD LAST in the AFC last season in pass defense, and we ranked 29th total in the NFL. That is atrocious. Some positions that we need to upgrade desperately would include the following: CB, DE, NT, SS, OG, OLB maybe WR depending if Malcolm Floyd or Danario Alexander return in Bolts uniforms in 2014.

Free agency in 2014 will do us some justice in 2 weeks, it will open or close the doors for potential draft candidates in 2014. So in the meantime, let’s toss all draft talk aside and lets see what options we have available in the free agency market. For now, we will be focusing on positions we need to fill. I am specifically looking for players that are under the age of 29, and are cheap to get, since we have almost no money to spend. I will be making a series of this same article, one post for each position. So today were going to start with the D-line, specifically the NT position.  Here are my favorite options for the Nose Tackle position going heading into free agency:

Dec 22, 2013; Detroit, MI, USA; New York Giants defensive tackle

Linval Joseph

(97) against the Detroit Lions at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

Linval Joseph (New York Giants)

Young, big, strong, what more can you ask for in a nose tackle? Linval Joseph is only 25 years old he stands at a height of 6′ 4″ and weighing 330 lbs. He has really long arms and does most of the pushing in the trenches. Football critics claim that his best years are ahead of him and I honestly deem this statement to be true, the sky is the limit for him. He is currently making about 1.5 million with the New York Giants and will most likely be testing the free agent waters this off-season. His stats from last season were pretty solid, he was able to rack up 3 sacks last season along with 59 tackles and a forced fumble. Signing Linval would eliminate the need of a NT in the draft. Just imagine our line with Kendall Reyes, Corey Liuget and Linval Joseph. Now that would be a SOLID line up font that would strike fear into the heart of offensive lines for years to come.

Corey Peters (Atlanta Falcons)

Another young man who could move, Peters is also 25 years of age. He is a hard hitter and not afraid to get into the face of opposing lineman. He too stands at a commanding 6′ 3″ and weighing 300 lbs, he has really long arms and likes to use them for leverage to get around the outside. He has a fabulous first step, and bursts right into action when the play is called, giving some explosiveness to his play. He has also had some weight concerns, but it’s just a matter of building a little bit more muscle. Other than that, he should be fine. If the Giants re-sign Joseph, I would hop on the Corey Peters train immediately. He would also be a solid addition to our d-line, a considerable upgrade over Cam Thomas (jeez, that guy is something else). He did have a better season than Linval Joseph did, so for the price, I would definitely sign Peters over Joseph if things don’t work out too well. He was able to crank out 5 sacks with 29 tackles to go with it.

If we were to pick up a NT in free agency, it would eliminate the need of a draft pick used on that position. I really don’t think we should pick up Louis Nix, don’t get me wrong I love the guy, but he had a terrible combine and that made me lose more trust in him. Plus, we can put that draft pick for another area in need, so it all works out pretty well. Stay tuned ladies and gentlemen, next article will be covering the WR position.

Who should we pick up: Linval Joseph, Corey Peters or another free agent?