One of the thinnest positions on the LA Chargers roster heading into the 2022 season is linebacker. Kyzir White walked away in free agency for only $3 million after having a breakout season that held up the rest of the linebacker room.
This always seemed by design as linebacker is the least important position in Brandon Staley's defensive scheme. Linebacker still has value, of course, but if there was one area where the team could take a hit it was there.
Also adding to the equation is Kenneth Murray. Murray played horribly last season but the team did invest a second and third-round pick to trade up for him in 2020. The team is not going to give up on him yet, especially after just two seasons in the league. The hope is that Murray could rebound in year three with a better idea of the defense as well as a clean bill of health.
Murray is one of the most intriguing players to watch during Chargers training camp but fans are going to have to wait to see him in action, as he was placed on the Physically Unable to Perform list ahead of camp.
Kenneth Murray being on the PUP list is not a total surprise with how the Chargers operate.
Kenneth Murray had offseason surgery on the same ankle that he hurt in Week 2 against the Dallas Cowboys, which is the source for him being on the PUP list. Brandon Staley did previously say that Murray should be ready by the start of camp, so this might seem like a small setback.
However, if there is one thing we have learned about Staley and the ship he runs it is that they are going to be as cautious as possible with injuries, particularly in camp and the preseason. Staley went as far as to not play a single key starter in any preseason games last season, which highlights how he approaches camp and the preseason.
Murray might feel good and his ankle might be at full strength but the Chargers are going to make him take it slowly. While it makes the linebacker room very thin at the start of camp, it will at least give guys like Troy Reeder, Amen Ogbongbemiga and any potential standout UDFAs to get reps and potentially earn a roster spot.
This should not be a setback for Murray in terms of production for the 2022 season — at least that is what the Chargers are hoping for.