The LA Chargers put together one of the best offseason portfolios in the sport as the team looks to capitalize on Justin Herbert's rookie contract. So much talent has been added to the roster, specifically on the defensive side of the ball, that will hopefully propel the Chargers into Super Bowl contention.
This is the most talented team that the Chargers have had since the mid-2000s and on paper, the team should be able to have even more success than that mid-2000s run. However, football is played in real life and not on paper and the Chargers have broken our hearts before.
Not everything looks great on paper as it pertains to the Chargers and there is a very specific area of the roster that has been getting questioned by NFL pundits and fans alike. Despite having such a big commitment to rebuilding the offensive line, the Chargers did not address the right tackle position. Trey Pipkins and Storm Norton will battle for the starting job.
Not upgrading right tackle is the Chargers' most questionable move of the offseason, per CBS Sports.
Jared Dubin of CBS Sports broke down the most questionable decision that every AFC team made this offseason and he did not pull any punches for the Chargers when it came to discussing right tackle.
"But it looks like they'll still be starting Storm Norton at right tackle, and that might be a bit of an issue. Norton was highly flammable last season, and in a division stocked with pass rushers coming off the left side of the defensive line (Maxx Crosby and Bradley Chubb, for example), that's a bit of an issue."
Dubin is right, Norton was not very good for the Chargers last season and he is also coming off of the worst game of the season against Maxx Crosby and the Las Vegas Raiders. Crosby ran through Norton like he was a turn style and regardless of how good the rest of the line is, that one hole could be an issue.
That being said, Norton did have promising moments last season and if you take away his worst games of the season his numbers were actually pretty decent. The horrible games are the problem, though. It does not matter if he is average for 13 games out of the year, having four blowup games is a problem for the Chargers.
The real reason why the team didn't seem to address the right tackle position is Pipkins, however. I find it very hard to believe that the Chargers would see what happened to Norton in Week 18 and be comfortable rolling that back out there in 2022. Instead, the team may have seen development out of the developmental tackle that they took in 2019. Crazy, I know.
Pipkins did get to start one game at right tackle in 2022 and he did not allow a single pressure. Granted, it was against a Denver Broncos team that was battling injuries but that is still really promising tape to go back and watch. Pipkins can certainly be better than Norton and it is not out of the realm of possibility that he is an average right tackle for the Bolts.
If Pipkins is average, and he is the worst part of the offensive line, then Justin Herbert is going to get a lot of time to throw the football in 2022.