Once the league year starts in 2020, the LA Chargers will have $60-70 million to play with in free agency. How they use it could make or break the 2020 season.
The Chargers’ cap room is the most they’ve had in a while. What could end up being as much as $70 million has the team in position to land a few quality free agents. Five free agents, in particular, strike me as fits for this team. This will mostly take a look at pending free agents on other teams. If you want to read some thoughts on pending Chargers free agents, go here.
In an attempt at realism, I’ve tried to make picks that may actually have a chance. Chris Jones would be an awesome free agent defensive tackle acquisition. The chance that the Kansas City Chiefs let him leave after the season and Super Bowl he had? Not a chance, really. Therefore, he doesn’t make the list.
Free Agent No. 1: Jack Conklin
The Tennessee Titans shocked the world in 2019 by advancing to the AFC Championship Game. One of the factors behind their rise was the offensive line. Rodger Saffold, Taylor Lewan and Ben Jones performed so well in the 2019 season. Another player that was a crucial part of the line was Jack Conklin. While maybe not viewed with the importance that Lewan is at tackle, Conklin had an excellent 2019 following his ACL injury in 2018.
Conklin was a first-team All-Pro selection during his 2016 rookie campaign. 2019 would have to be considered Conklin’s first or second-best year of his career. He struggled in pass blocking after his ACL injury but rebounded to a 93 percent pass block win rate in 2019, the highest of his career.
Conklin may be pricey, with a contract that may range from $8-15 million in average annual value. But with his level of play after he recovered from his ACL injury, the Chargers have to consider how much of an upgrade he might be.
Jack Conklin's pass block win rate last three seasons:
2018: 82%2017: 86%2016: 80%
PBWR average for OTs in 2018 was 81%.
— Seth Walder (@SethWalder) May 1, 2019