Chargers gifted new free-agent WR target who is perfect for Justin Herbert

Los Angeles Chargers v New England Patriots
Los Angeles Chargers v New England Patriots / Kathryn Riley/GettyImages

The LA Chargers welcomed nine new players in the 2024 NFL Draft (with even more undrafted free agents) and there is still room to add even more help. As it stands right now, the Chargers' roster is at 87 players and the team has money to spend in free agency.

Free agents no longer count against the compensatory formula after May 1 and the Chargers have the room (and the funds) to add up to three free agents. While the busiest part of the offseason is in the past, the Chargers may still make a handful of moves to bolster the roster for 2024.

There are several free agents who make sense for the Bolts after the draft and that list grew on Tuesday. After drafting Brian Thomas Jr. in the first round, the Jacksonville Jaguars have officially released wide receiver Zay Jones.

Zay Jones is a perfect wide receiver for the Chargers to sign

The Chargers took three wide receivers in the 2024 NFL Draft to go from three 53-man roster options to six (sorry, Alex Erickson). To many, this may signal that the Chargers will not bring in another veteran wide receiver and that the team will rely on the youth.

That should not be the case, though. There are several unknowns atop the wide receiver depth chart that the Chargers should prepare for. Joshua Palmer has battled various injuries, as had Ladd McConkey, who may have natural struggles as a rookie (although that seems unlikely). Quentin Johnston could be an outright dud and Derius Davis is a return specialist first and foremost.

Brenden Rice and Cornelius Johnson both have potential as players to develop but relying on two seventh-round picks to be the only depth options is dangerous. Just look back at the 2020 draft when the Chargers had a nearly identical situation with Joe Reed and K.J. Hill. Hill was just as hyped-up as Rice and Johnson and he didn't work out at all for the Bolts.

The Chargers signing someone would push either Rice or Johnson to the practice squad and that is fine. Let the two rookies compete for the job and may the best man win. It is highly unlikely that another team would claim one of the two to be on an active roster, so the Chargers should be okay with the lesser of the two starting their career on the practice squad.

It makes sense for the entirety of the depth chart and in Jones' specific case, he makes a lot of sense as a weapon to add. The Chargers need to add another true X receiver option to compete with Joshua Palmer. McConkey can play inside and outside but he is not an X receiver, nor is Quentin Johnston, who should be living on short-yardage routes.

Jones is someone who can play in the intermediate and deep areas and has proven that he can be a reliable target. Last season wasn't great as he missed half the year and saw the lion's share of his targets taken away but the 2022 season was very promising.

Jones finished with 823 yards on 82 receptions with five touchdowns. Considering the status of the Chargers' wide receiver room, it is feasible that he can finish with similar numbers. That receiver is still in there.

It is a low-risk, high-reward signing. Sure, Jones may have thoroughly upset Chargers fans back in 2022 when he did the LaDainian Tomlinson and Shawne Merriman celebrations into one after a touchdown, but fans can look past that. Signing Jones is what is best for the team and is a move that makes perfect sense.

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