Even as free agency begins to wind down, the LA Chargers still have a need at wide receiver. Which wideouts could be Chargers in 2020?
Despite the great seasons from Keenan Allen and Mike Williams, the depth of the receiving group was a problem in 2019. Dontrelle Inman and Travis Benjamin both got placed on injured reserve fairly early in the season. Benjamin has been signed by the 49ers, and it’s unlikely Inman is back either.
Currently, the third receiver on the depth chart would be Andre Patton. While there’s a good chance for Patton to keep developing and improving, there should be doubts about his ability to play such a pivotal role in 2020. He struggled with drops last season, as well as separation. Players like Jason Moore and Jalen Guyton also fall into the developmental category.
The LA Chargers need a bona fide third receiver option who can take the pressure of Allen and Williams. From the rest of the free-agent pool and the draft, there are some interesting options.
1. Demarcus Robinson
The Chiefs have a tight cap. The NFL’s internal salary report found that the Chiefs have just $555K in cap space. While not necessarily a problem for the Super Bowl champions, they will have to shed some talent over the coming years, especially with the inevitable Patrick Mahomes extension.
That almost definitely means losing Demarcus Robinson. While never top two on the depth chart, Robinson has always had good ability in getting separation and has great speed. He went from 288 receiving yards in 2018 to 449 receiving yards in 2019.
The Chargers don’t have a lot of money to spend in free agency, but Robinson wouldn’t cost a lot. It’s hard to pin a value on him in week two of free agency, but it’s probably $2-4 million in average annual value. That’s a range the Chargers can certainly reach.
Robinson will be just 26 heading into the 2020 season. While he can sometimes struggle with drops, his route running ability and separation are probably the best out of the remaining free-agent class. He’s got great talent and athleticism at a low price point. It just seems like a Tom Telesco type move.