Chargers’ best decision No. 6: Letting Donnie Jones go
Additions: Tyler Newsome (UDFA), Ty Long (CFL)
Departures: Donnie Jones (FA)
What happened: Following a season of his lowest punting average since 2004 and lowest net average since 2011, Jones was not asked to return to the Chargers. Newsome was brought in as an undrafted free agent, and Ty Long signed in January following two seasons in the CFL.
Why it’s a good decision: It just wasn’t working. For whatever reason, Drew Kaser was not the guy for the job with the Chargers despite boasting solid punting average numbers. The former sixth-round selection has spent time with both the Green Bay Packers and Oakland Raiders, but has been released by both in the span of six months. The team brought in Jones to solve the problem, but wasn’t at all what the Chargers hoped he would be.
The team now looks to two younger men to become the team’s mainstay at punter. While boasting some of the best hair on the team, Notre Dame punter Tyler Newsome set the school record for single-game punting average with 59.6 yards. His training camp competition, Ty Long, has produced a 47.9 and 48.8 punting average in 2017 and 2018, respectively, while playing for the BC Lions.
Both will likely be better options than Jones. The real question is: Can they hold for a kick? Because fans would prefer to avoid that controversy again.