Chargers Free Agency

LA Chargers: Free-agent offensive linemen to avoid this offseason

NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE - OCTOBER 25: Alejandro Villanueva #78 of the Pittsburgh Steelers plays against the Tennessee Titans at Nissan Stadium on October 25, 2020 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by Frederick Breedon/Getty Images)
NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE - OCTOBER 25: Alejandro Villanueva #78 of the Pittsburgh Steelers plays against the Tennessee Titans at Nissan Stadium on October 25, 2020 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by Frederick Breedon/Getty Images)
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(Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images) – LA Chargers
(Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images) – LA Chargers

Free-agent offensive linemen the LA Chargers should avoid: Alejandro Villanueva

For what it is worth, Alejandro Villanueva was not that bad last season for the Pittsburgh Steelers. In fact, he was better last year than anyone else on this list. That does not mean that the Chargers should fall victim to the same trap that they have fallen into in the past.

Villanueva posted a respectable 74.6 grade on PFF in 2020, something that no offensive lineman could do on the LA Chargers. He is a better pass blocker than he is a run blocker and that fits the M-O of protecting Herbert. He also is a career left tackle, so there will be no sort of overlap with Bryan Bulaga.

But again, this is an age thing. Villanueva is the best name on this list and the one that I would be the least upset with if the team signed but I cannot sit here and say that I would still be thrilled about the move.

These kinds of signings have burned the Chargers so much in the past. I just do not get how we, as fans, can sit here and talk about how disappointing Bryan Bulaga was and how the team should maybe move on and then tout Villanueva as a good target when he profiles identically to Bulaga.

Villanueva is going to be 33 in September. He is two years older than Bulaga and while Bulaga had some injury history with Green Bay, nobody was worrying about it then. I just see the exact same scenario taking place.

Next. 1 free-agent target from each old Staley team

At most, the LA Chargers get one solid year out of Villanueva on a three-year deal and then are left with a regressing/injured veteran lineman for two more years who is taking up a chunk of cap space.

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