The Chargers have a very public decision to make about extensive receiver Mike Williams.
For now, general supervisor Tom Telesco is trying to keep his views on the topic incredibly personal.
Telesco made use of a variation of, “I just won’t have a comment on agreement programs ideal now,” continuously Tuesday when asked about Williams and some others at the NFL scouting merge.
Drafted seventh general in 2017, Williams is a pending free agent coming off his finest time. He established profession highs for catches (76) and yards acquiring (1,146) and experienced nine touchdown grabs.
The Chargers could set a franchise tag on him at a cost of about $19 million for 2022 or indicator him to an extension that would decreased his rapid salary cap strike but also involve a larger money commitment.
Requested precisely whether he would favor to go the latter route with Williams, Telesco stated, “Sure, the preference would be that.”
Williams’ once-a-year current market value is forecast to be $16.7 million by Spotrac, which tasks his extension costing slightly less than $67 million in excess of four decades.
The Chargers have the 3rd-most cap space in the NFL, in accordance to OverTheCap.com, giving them the adaptability to perform out anything with Williams.
They also are envisioned to launch Bryan Bulaga, a move that would web a cap financial savings of $10.75 million. The veteran ideal tackle, who is thanks a $2.5-million roster bonus in mid-March, has been limited to 11 video games over the past two seasons because of harm.
But, soon after Williams, the Chargers have many other interior free of charge agents to consider and an clear need to have to upgrade their protection. Williams is one particular of 9 pending unrestricted absolutely free brokers who started at minimum five online games very last year.
“You just can’t provide everybody again all the time,” Telesco claimed. “Our rosters adjust around practically 30% per 12 months. You’re not heading to be ready to provide back 22 starters on both equally sides of the ball. Continuity is pleasant, but it can not be the No. 1 component of placing equally sides of the ball jointly.”
Regardless of the defensive difficulties the Chargers experienced throughout 2021, Telesco again emphasized the relevance of even more defending Justin Herbert and offering the youthful quarterback with additional playmakers.
The Chargers have uncertainty on the right side of their offensive line, and — even if Williams is retained — some draft prognosticators have them deciding on a wide receiver with the No. 17 decide on in April.
“The concentrate just can’t be on just one particular aspect of the ball,” Telesco mentioned. “It has to be on both. I want to make guaranteed on offense we really don’t take a stage back again following 12 months. I considered we experienced a truly excellent calendar year on offense. It was not fantastic by any indicates, but it was great.”
A further offensive area that requirements improvement is functioning again, exactly where the Chargers were being not able to discover reliable creation powering Austin Ekeler.
Justin Jackson, a seventh-round draft select in 2018, has been oft-injured and is a different unrestricted free agent. Joshua Kelley and Larry Rountree III both equally need development.
“If we want our offense to evolve and get better, we have to get much better at that place,” Telesco mentioned. “Wherever that comes from, that remains to be seen. We need to have to get a lot more from that spot.”
The Chargers experienced a tough time halting the run in coach Brandon Staley’s 1st year, a truth that has quite a few analysts projecting a defense-weighty draft for them up coming month.
Amongst the Chargers’ front 7, Uchenna Nwosu, Kyzir White, Justin Jones and Linval Joseph are all absolutely free agents. So is veteran cornerback Chris Harris Jr.
Together with bringing in some new items, Telesco claimed he anticipates the protection receiving greater with far more expertise under Staley.
“I think we’ll choose some big strides in the 2nd 12 months with Brandon,” he explained. “I’m actually assured in this team, assured in this plan and the procedure we’re functioning, self-assured in the gamers we have.”
The Chargers’ roster uncertainty extends even to specific groups, where by kicker Dustin Hopkins, returner Andre Roberts, prolonged snapper Matt Overton and gunner Ryan Smith are all about to come to be absolutely free brokers. Punter Ty Lengthy is a restricted free agent.
They also have a new special teams coordinator in Ryan Ficken and particular groups assistant in Chris Gould. Telesco stated he will count on both of those coaches for enter pertaining to the roster, noting that he by now has been amazed by Ficken.
“He’s heading to be a major portion of us, regardless of whether it is continuity with what we have to what he sees on the outside the house,” Telesco claimed. “I’m hunting ahead to doing work with him. … I think he’s a very good evaluator.”