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Los Angeles Chargers’ free agency primer

CARSON, CA - DECEMBER 31: Tre Boston #33 of the Los Angeles Chargers runs down field during the of the game against the Oakland Raiders at StubHub Center on December 31, 2017 in Carson, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
CARSON, CA - DECEMBER 31: Tre Boston #33 of the Los Angeles Chargers runs down field during the of the game against the Oakland Raiders at StubHub Center on December 31, 2017 in Carson, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
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Is it too early to talk offseason?  I mean the season isn’t even cold yet, right?

But for those of you who like to hope and dream during that long drought until opening day, I give you the free agency primer.

Let’s start off by looking at the list of Chargers free agents.

Antonio Gates – UFA Corey Toomer – UFA Matt Slauson – UFA Jeremiah Attaochu – UFA Kellen Clemens – UFA Nick Novak – UFA Kenny Wiggins – UFA Branden Oliver – UFA Jeff Cumberland – UFA Michael Schofield – UFA Michael Ola – UFA Tre Boston – UFA Tenny Palepoi – UFA

Asante Cleveland – RFA Adrian Phillips – RFA Andrew Williams – RFA Nick Dzubnar – RFA Geremy Davis – RFA Isaiah Burse – RFA Sean McGrath – RFA Chris McCain – RFA Tyrell Williams – RFA

There you see the list of restricted and unrestricted free agents. The first thing that jumps out to me about the list is there is no one on there that is a must-have for next season. That is good for the organization. It is not going to be burdened by having to drop big money on someone and have any long, drawn-out negotiation and contract processes.

A name not on the list is Gus Bradley. For me, bringing back Gus is more important than any player on the list.

The highest priority for me of the UFA’s would be Kenny Wiggins and Tenny Palepoi. After that it is Matt Slauson and Michael Schofield, because O-line depth is never a bad thing.  But the Chargers should not break the bank for any of these guys.

As for the restricted free agents, you need to hold onto Adrian Phillips, Chris McCain and Tyrell Williams, which should be easy enough to do.

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But what about Antonio Gates? Let’s be honest here. Antonio has slowed down. Sure he still has the wiliness of a seasoned veteran to fool a couple of kids several times a game, but Hunter Henry is the future. If Gates wants to come back for a limited role and a small contract, make it happen, but he is not a $5 million guy anymore.

Now are you thinking, “Nice! let’s hit the open market?” Because if you are, Tazz is going to tell you to cool your jets, because the Chargers have a big problem looming.  Here are their top four free agents for 2019: Casey Hayward, Trevor Williams, Melvin Gordon and Denzel Perryman.

Right. You see where this is going.

The Chargers this offseason really need to start working on extending those four guys They are central to the Chargers success and the Bolts would be wise to start working on contracts for them.

So, should the Chargers target any big names in free agency? My first thoughts are right tackle and a safety to replace Tre Boston. I’m not sure there are any other positions I would throw big money at.

If you were GM, what would your plan be for free agency?

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