Today’s roundtable is pretty simple. I reached out to the guys to give me one player they’d like to see signed by the Chargers on each side of the ball. I’ll start.
KP: First off I’m cutting Corey Liuget. I’m replacing him with Sheldon Richardson. That’s my defensive pick. Richardson is a stud. Where the Chargers lacked last year is exactly where he’ll thrive. Making plays from the backside. He’s quick, he’s powerful, and he’s a perfect complement to Melvin Ingram and Joey Bosa. That defensive line would be nasty. Richardson has really good awareness and you see him sniff out screens or beat blockers on lateral runs. If they sign him and him only, it’s a win.
On offense, I’m staying in the trenches. Last month the Bears neglected to pick up Josh Sitton’s option for 2018. Let Matt Slauson walk. Bump Kenny Wiggins to the bench. Forrest Lamp goes to right guard. Dan Feeney plays center. Now you have a premier left guard that has a veteran presence. But actually fits what you want to do, unlike Slauson. The Chargers simply weren’t “mean” enough up front. That’s what Sitton brings. If they truly want to run the ball they’ll go out and get one of the best run blocking guards in the league. Sitton is a big powerful guy that can show Lamp and Feeney the ropes.
Both these signings should give the Chargers flexibility in the draft as well. Maybe draft an Isaiah Wynn in the 1st round out of Georgia and bump him to right tackle. Line transformation: complete.
Louis Gorini: Chargers need to beef up the middle of their line. Star Lotuleilei will be a fine upgrade to replace the aging Brandon Mebane. On the flip side, Chargers need to replace Barksdale, their right tackle. Barksdale has been hit with nagging injuries the last 2 years and his play has regressed JuWann James would be a massive upgrade over Barksdale especially in the running game
Ryan Doyle: Weston Richburg is my pick on offense. I understand the Feeney move, but he was solid at LG and I don’t think there’s a reason to move him. Add Forrest Lamp at right guard, the interior of the offensive line is tremendous.
Defensively, Tyrann Matthieu if he gets released.
That is still up in the air so I will go with Sheldon Richardson. I was against signing him last season, but I think he would be a perfect addition between Bosa and Ingram. He was a stud early in his career with the Jets and I hope he could bring that production to LA.
Nathan Graber-Lipperman: I’m a fan of picking up Lotuleilei to anchor the middle, and I’m assuming he won’t absolutely break the back for a cap-strapped team like the Bolts. And here’s an interesting idea on offense: should Travis Benjamin get cut, picking up John Brown on a one-year, prove it deal. He’s shown flashes of being a big-time player, and who better to elevate his play than PR17?
Jamie Hoyle: Offense: Cameron Fleming, OT. He’s a guy who has played well in limited action, shouldn’t cost a ton and has a chance to be a relatively inexpensive replacement for Joe Barksdale. Gimme.
Defense: Daquan Jones, DT. Jones is a defensive tackle who has been playing defensive end in the Tennessee 3-4 front, but at 320 pounds he’s much better suited to playing along the interior line. He shouldn’t cost a ton and would be a good replacement for Brandon Mebane. I think the Chargers need two DT’s this offseason, so signing Daquan shouldn’t deter them from drafting someone in the first two days of the draft.
Jason Michaels: I am going to respond with my preferences for free agents, regardless of cost/likelihood details. I’d prefer to pick up E.J. Gaines for CB because you can never have too much there. I would also appreciate homework being done on QB Aj McCarron. I’m not in love with the draft QBs, and he’s the best potential 2 or 3-year bridge QB once Rivers quits. Well, Foles is better, but that’s not a free agent move
Cody Young: On offense, I’m going to go with Cameron Fleming as well. He’s a solid young player at 25 years of age who has progressed in each of the past 3 seasons. He would provide improvement along the bolts offensive line. On defense, I really want Tyrann Mathieu, but it’s unclear exactly how much he would cost or if he will even be available at all. So, if the price is right, I think Star Lotulelei is the way to go. The Chargers need to add some players along the defensive front, and Star would add a lot of value in the run stopping department.
Richard Wade: On offense, I want to see Tom Telesco add to the line. Since this is a wish list and not a prediction, I would love to see Andrew Norwell in lightning bolts next season. On defense, I am going to lean more toward the plausible and hope for Star Lotuleilei. He should be relatively inexpensive compared to the Sheldon Richardsons of the world and would greatly improve the interior of the defensive line.