Raiders overspend on a regressing pass-rusher after Chargers' big moves

Seattle Seahawks v Arizona Cardinals
Seattle Seahawks v Arizona Cardinals / Norm Hall/GettyImages

The LA Chargers have been extremely busy this offseason as Brandon Staley and Tom Telesco have taken an aggressive approach to improve the team. After re-signing Mike Williams to a three-year, $60 million deal, the Bolts traded a second and sixth-round pick for Khalil Mack and signed the trio of J.C. Jackson, Sebastian Joseph-Day and Austin Johnson.

The AFC West is gearing up to be explosive in 2022. The Kansas City Chiefs are always in the Super Bowl picture with Patrick Mahomes, the Denver Broncos added Russell Wilson to turn themselves into a contender and the Chargers have Justin Herbert and a slew of new faces. Playing fourth fiddle in all of the hype has been the Las Vegas Raiders.

The Raiders are trying to change that, however, as Vegas made a big signing on Wednesday. Tom Pelissero of NFL Network reported that the Raiders agreed to sign Chandler Jones and that the contract should be expected to be worth around $17 million per year.

While Chandler Jones is a big name and some Charger fans may not like the sound of him facing Justin Herbert twice a year, especially with Maxx Crosby on the other side, there really is not that much to worry about with Jones.

The Chargers should be happy that the Raiders overspent on Chandler Jones

The Raiders are spending $17 million on an edge rusher that was not even better than what they had last season. Chandler Jones had a huge game in Week 1 where he recorded five sacks against the Tennessee Titans. Outside of that game, Jones was not very good in 2021.

In fact, his overall numbers were worse than that of Yannick Ngakoue. Granted, Ngakoue had Maxx Crosby on the other side and that certainly opens things up, but that does not change the fact that Jones's numbers were not impressive at all last season.

Some might point out terrible defensive line play on Arizona that resulted in Jones's numbers being worse but that is not really true. While Pro Football Focus grades are far from being the end-all-say-all, the fact that the Cardinals finished with the ninth-best pass-rushing grade shows that he had help around him.

Jones is 32 years old and is only going to get worse with age. He is already starting to regress and if the Raiders are paying him $17 million when he is 33 or 34 then it is going to end up being a terrible contract.

Some Raider fans may counter that and point out a 31-year-old Khalil Mack on the Chargers, which is a fair counter-point. However, even if Mack regresses some in his pass-rushing he at least has his elite run defense to back it up and his ability to set the edge won't regress as quickly. Jones is awful against the run and is a one-trick pony.

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This isn't a move that the LA Chargers should be worried about. In fact, it should be one that the team welcomes with open arms.