3 starting free-agent right tackles that the Chargers can still afford

NFL Combine
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Cornelius Lucas
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2. Cornelius Lucas

Cornelius Lucas is a swing tackle who can play on either side of the offensive line. Last season, Lucas filled in at right tackle for the Washington Commanders and actually had a down season that was along the lines of David Quessenberry. He finished the season with a 95.7% efficiency rate in pass-blocking.

That number, like Quessenberry, puts him in the bottom half of right tackles in the NFL. That may not be all that appealing considering Lucas does not have the same run-blocking ability as Quessenberry. He can hold his own but he is not a great run-blocker by any means.

However, as mentioned, those were down numbers for Lucas, who has had some really promising seasons and has really stepped up when he has gotten his opportunity. Perhaps all he needs is a team to give him a starting job and run with it.

Playing primarily left tackle in 2020, Lucas finished with the 10th-best pass-blocking PFF grade of any tackle in the NFL with at least 300 pass-blocking snaps. He had a 97.7% efficiency rate, which was tied for 16th. Lucas was a top-20 tackle in the league in 2020 and was just as good in 2019.

In 2019 he played primarily right tackle and had 297 pass-blocking snaps. He again had a 97.7% efficiency rate, which was tied for 10th in the entire league! Lucas is a hidden gem waiting to be scooped up by a smart team.

The best part? PFF only projects him to get a two-year, $5 million contract this offseason. That is obviously affordable and would be an exceptional deal that gives the Chargers a starting right tackle who can also swing over to the left side if needed in case of emergency.