Roster move No. 2: Cut left tackle Russell Okung
While this may not necessarily be an easy one to swallow for Chargers fans, it would most definitely help the team. I love Russell Okung for what he brings in leadership to the team. With that said, it’s hard to love the remainder of Okung’s contract and the increased risk of injury he seems to be dealing with.
While it would be even better if Okung decided it was time to retire to focus on his health, family, and post-football life; it is still the right move for the Chargers to cut ties with Okung one way or another.
Cutting Okung would save the Chargers $13 million this offseason (via Spotrac). The Chargers have not had much wiggle room in terms of cap space for what feels like a very long time now.
Shedding the Okung contract along with some others (who will be mentioned as well) would put the team in a very good spot for the future. Obviously cutting your starting left tackle, who also happens to be a captain of the team probably won’t fare well with a lot of people when the news breaks. However, over time the fans will begin to realize that it was the right move to make.
Leaving the Chargers with plenty of cap space, Trey Pipkins starting at left tackle, and a rookie at right tackle may sound terrifying the first time around.
However, Pipkins has shown promise for being thrust into a role he may not have been fully prepared for, and the offensive linemen available in the 2020 draft are as good as we have seen in a long time. As much as it hurts to say it, Okung should not be a Charger at the start of the 2020 season.