It appears as if the Los Angeles Chargers have asked one of their players to take a pay cut.
According to NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport, the Chargers will restructure defensive tackle Corey Liuget’s contract.
The #Chargers and DL Corey Liuget have agreed to terms on a revised contract to keep him in Los Angeles for another season, source said. He was set to make $8M in 2018 and his status had been up in the air.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) April 16, 2018
Liuget was scheduled to make $8 million in 2018. However, he was been suspended without pay for the first four games of the season due to violating the league’s policy on performance-enhancing drugs. According to Spotrac.com, Liuget was already forfeiting $2.24 million in 2018 salary/bonus.
This needed to be done. The 2011 first-round pick hasn’t lived up to the five-year, $51.25 million contract extension he signed in 2015. His 21 combined tackles in 2017 was the lowest total since his rookie year. He only has 4.5 sacks over the past three seasons while missing a total of nine games during that span.
Liuget did play better last year after moving inside to defensive tackle in Gus Bradley’s 4-3 scheme. He looked more disruptive and became a 2018 Pro Bowl alternate. But he’s not the player he once was (and hasn’t been the past two years). He also split snaps with former sixth-round pick Darius Philon, who has proven to be more of a playmaker after racking up 31 combined tackles, 4.5 sacks, one forced fumble and one pass deflection in 16 games played last year. The 24-year-old Philon will likely get the chance to start in the upcoming season.
As for Liuget, he’s only 28 years old. I was one for keeping him as long as he took a pay cut.
And after restructuring Liuget’s contract and oddly rescinding defensive end Chris McCain’s RFA tender, the Chargers appear to be up to something. Perhaps they are planning on adding another player through free agency. Re-signing free safety Tre Boston comes to mind, as does going after big-bodied nose tackle Johnathan Hankins.