Chargers Draft

Chargers’ eight best 2019 offseason decisions thus far

TUCSON, AZ - SEPTEMBER 09: Linebackers Emeke Egbule #8 and Matthew Adams #9 of the Houston Cougars celebrate after a safety by the Arizona Wildcats in the second half at Arizona Stadium on September 9, 2017 in Tucson, Arizona. The Houston Cougars won 19-16. (Photo by Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images)
TUCSON, AZ - SEPTEMBER 09: Linebackers Emeke Egbule #8 and Matthew Adams #9 of the Houston Cougars celebrate after a safety by the Arizona Wildcats in the second half at Arizona Stadium on September 9, 2017 in Tucson, Arizona. The Houston Cougars won 19-16. (Photo by Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images)
facebooktwitterreddit
6 of 6
SAN DIEGO, CA – SEPTEMBER 14: Free safety Earl Thomas #29 of the Seattle Seahawks reacts on the field while playing the San Diego Chargers at Qualcomm Stadium on September 14, 2014 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
SAN DIEGO, CA – SEPTEMBER 14: Free safety Earl Thomas #29 of the Seattle Seahawks reacts on the field while playing the San Diego Chargers at Qualcomm Stadium on September 14, 2014 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

Chargers’ best decision No. 1: Not spending money on prize free agents

What happened: Despite “ties” to players such as Earl Thomas, Ndamukong Suh (unsigned still), and C.J. Mosley, the Chargers opted to use their cap space to bring in small-cost veterans and re-sign their own players.

Why it’s a good move: The Chargers currently have a two-year plan with their roster; just look at how many players they have under contract in 2021. It’s clear the team is preparing to change the direction of their franchise, if need be. Telesco appears to be in no hurry to make those five, six-year contracts with massive amounts of guaranteed money happen, at least not where outside free agents are concerned. The veteran general manager has begun to rely more on the draft to fill out his roster. Last year, a similar strategy produced a 12-4 team who made it to the Divisional Round.

The Chargers had every opportunity to cut or extend players to make room for big-name free agents, but as of now have opted to pass on them. There were massive needs at free safety and defensive tackle, and there was a chance the Bolts filled one through free agency. The team decided to wait until the draft, which netted them instant starters in Jerry Tillery and Nasir Adderley. Adderley, in particular, is a perfect example of why overpaying in free agency is not necessary, and why fans should hold off on their criticism until after the draft. The Chargers could be in one of two scenarios right now:

  1. Signed 30 year old Earl Thomas to a four-year, $55 million contract with $20 million guaranteed coming off a season-ending injury (PFF grade of 91.3).
  2. Drafted Nasir Adderley in the second round of the 2019 NFL Draft (PFF grade of 90.3).

Next. Where are the Chargers' biggest remaining weaknesses?

Adderley is the unknown, and has yet to take an NFL snap. However, given his projected role and his excellence as a free safety, it’s not out of the question to say that most every Chargers fan is happier with the second option. Telesco stuck with his philosophy, and it paid off.

facebooktwitterreddit