Defensive backs that the LA Chargers spend on in free agency:
There is a decent chance that the LA Chargers spend big on one of the premier corners in free agency like J.C. Jackson and then utilize the draft to build out more depth. However, if they are copying the Bengals' blueprint then they will sign two corners on decent-sized deals that do not break the bank.
Last year the Bengals signed Mike Hilton to a four-year, $24 million contract and Chidobe Awuzie to a three-year, $21.75 million. While they manipulated the cap hits of both players to be smaller in year one, the average combined cap hit is $13.25 million.
One important thing to note is the age of the corners that Cincy signed. Both are in their mid-20s and were not as risk of the post-30 regression. The Chargers should take the same approach. If the Chargers are spending around that much, they could sign:
Douglas is 26 years old and showed real potential with the Green Bay Packers in 2021 with five interceptions. Douglas has true outside corner size at six-foot-two, allowing the Chargers to move Asante Samuel Jr. around the secondary more and play more slot.
He is not a true CB1 but as we have seen with Brandon Staley before, he can get the best out of corners like Douglas and as a collective whole with the other pieces they bring in, the secondary could be much better. PFF projects Douglas to sign a three-year, $20.25 million deal.
Jordan Whitehead is actually a safety but he is someone who Brandon Staley could have a lot of fun with. While Whitehead is not elite in deep pass coverage, the team already has Derwin James and Nasir Adderley and could best utilize Whitehead's versatility in Staley's DIME packages.
Whitehead is someone who could play up high at safety, can play in the box or can even play in the slot against certain receivers and hold his own. In 2021 28% of his snaps came at free safety, 20% came at slot corner and 35% came in the box.
Whitehead turns 25 in March and PFF projects him to get a three-year, $18 million deal. Together, the Chargers would be spending $12.75 million on these two.