Sean Payton announced that he is stepping away from the New Orleans Saints and will not coach in 2022 (although he did not rule out returning to coaching at some point down the line). This could impact the LA Chargers, as it could create a hole at offensive coordinator depending on who the Saints hire to replace Payton.
There is also a new question that has become a topical one for the rest of the league: which players can be poached from the New Orleans Saints? The Saints are well over the salary cap and while they have a lot of salary-cap flexibility, they still have to clear the money before free agency begins.
With Payton out, the Saints are entering a new era and while they have flexibility, they also could simply look to move on from some players and get assets in return. The Saints are an older team and it is probably smart to start over with as many draft picks as possible with a new head coach.
That opens the door for a trade and some Charger fans might be wondering which Saints the team should target in a trade. Heck, we had all intentions of bringing you a multi-page article that broke down every possible trade candidate is. There is just one problem.
It is extremely hard to see the LA Chargers trading for a single player from the New Orleans Saints.
Both the Chargers and the Saints want to accomplish certain goals this offseason and those goals simply do not align for the two teams. While certain players like Demario Davis would be lovely on the Chargers, it just does not seem like a realistic possibility.
The main reason why is that the Saints are going to look to trade players (if they trade anyone) that open up salary-cap space. That eliminates someone like Demario Davis from being traded. Davis would be perfect in LA but the Saints would only save $500,000 and they are likely going to still try and be competitive. It is not going to be a complete firesale like an NBA team.
So who are the candidates that actually save the Saints enough money to justify trading them for assets? Ryan Ramcyzk saves $7.8 million, Alvin Kamara saves $5.5 million, Marshon Lattimore saves $14 million, Marcus Davenport would save $8.4 million.
The Chargers don't need Alvin Kamara so you can forget about him right away. The Saints also probably aren't trading someone they just spent multiple picks to get in the first round in Davenport, so you can forget about him as well. That leaves Ramcyzk and Lattimore as possible candidates and they both play positions of need for the Bolts.
The problem is that both players have big salaries that would put a dent into the Chargers' cap space. While the Chargers have the space, they need to re-sign several players and both positions are probably better off being built up in the 2022 NFL Draft.
If the Chargers are going to spend that much on a right tackle or corner they might as well sign someone. There are options, particularly at corner. That way, the team does not have to part ways with a second-round pick plus the later picks that would be thrown in as well.
It is just unlikely to happen. Tom Telesco does not make many trades as is and it is hard to see him making a trade like this with the New Orleans Saints.