Chargers Free Agency

LA Chargers: 4 defensive free agents that could still help the team

JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA - DECEMBER 27: Tashaun Gipson Sr. #38 of the Chicago Bears enters the field for the second half of a game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at TIAA Bank Field on December 27, 2020 in Jacksonville, Florida. (Photo by James Gilbert/Getty Images)
JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA - DECEMBER 27: Tashaun Gipson Sr. #38 of the Chicago Bears enters the field for the second half of a game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at TIAA Bank Field on December 27, 2020 in Jacksonville, Florida. (Photo by James Gilbert/Getty Images)
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(Photo by Chris Coduto/Getty Images) – LA Chargers
(Photo by Chris Coduto/Getty Images) – LA Chargers

K.J. Wright, OLB

Veteran linebacker K.J. Wright is still a free agent and that should be music to the LA Chargers’ ears. Wright was a natural fit for the Bolts but it would not have made sense to overpay for him early in free agency if the team could simply wait it out and lower the price.

At the beginning of free agency, I wrote about why the Chargers should push hard for K.J. Wright. It is a good thing that the Chargers did not push hard for him too early, but now, the team should definitely be calling his agent.

Wright is on the wrong side of 30 but at this point in free agency, the Chargers could sign him to a one-year deal with a second-year that is non-guaranteed. That is important as it removes the long-term risk of bringing in a veteran who regresses, which we have seen before on the Chargers.

Wright is a great veteran to add depth to outside linebacker, assuming the Chargers make the switch to a 3-4 defense with Brandon Staley. The Bolts have no real depth at the position right now and likely are not taking an outside linebacker until the third round, at the earliest, in the 2021 NFL Draft.

That third-rounder is likely not going to be a massive game-changer in year one, so getting a veteran that can split snaps in a rotation is ideal. That is exactly what the team did with Uchenna Nwosu.

Wright is exciting as he was one of the best outside linebackers in pass coverage last season. There are certainly better options at getting to the passer or in run defense but Wright can certainly hold his own there as well.

Outside linebackers have to be good in all three phases of the defense to be successful and Wright is just that.

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