As noted plenty of times here at Bolt Beat, the LA Chargers have an interesting offseason ahead. NFL free agency officially begins on March 17 and the Chargers have multiple areas of the roster that need to be addressed.
This is not a team that is looking to rebuild and can take their time with eventually filling in these holes, either. This is a team that has star power and has a sensational young quarterback on his rookie contract. That is the number one building block to winning a Super Bowl and the Chargers cannot afford to miss out on this window.
That is what makes this offseason so important for the Chargers. While yes, the front office needs to build something that is sustainable for the next several years, they also need to build something that can improve from last season and not just make the playoffs, but make a legitimate run.
That is a lot to ask, especially with the holes on the roster. There is not a massive number of holes but the holes the team does have are noticeable. Offensive line, edge rusher and cornerback are the biggest needs, and three of the most important position groups on the roster.
With essentially no dead cap being spent and a potential new contract for Hunter Henry, there is the possibility of the Chargers making several roster cuts to free up salary-cap space. Trai Turner and his $11.5 million is the prime candidate with veterans Casey Hayward and Chris Harris being next.
It makes sense from a numbers standpoint. Hayward took a huge step down in 2020 and Harris was hurt (and not that great). According to Over the Cap, the Chargers can free up $9.75 million and $7.5 million, respectively.
However, the LA Chargers may not cut Casey Hayward this offseason
Despite the possibility of freeing up $9.75 million with only $2 million in dead cap, I find it hard-pressed to believe that the LA Chargers will actually cut Hayward.
While the best version of the team might be without Hayward, I do think what he has given the Chargers during his career as well as the hope that he will be better with better health in 2021 will keep him around.
There are deeper reasons for why the Bolts likely won’t cut Hayward this offseason as well. Let’s dive into them.