Every year, the league owners and head coaches get together in Phoenix, Arizona to discuss potential rule changes and other important off-season topics with each other and the league. The biggest bit of news stemming from their meetings so far has been the vote to allow defensive pass-interference calls, and non-calls, to be challenged.
What does this mean for future games? Well, most are speculating it will cause games to become even longer. Some are worried that there will be a rash of Hail Mary’s thrown in hopes of taking advantage of the instant replay.
It’s definitely something to keep an eye on going forward. If anything, I believe it will go through some checks and balances once the preseason games commence and the referees can paint a clearer picture on how often it will be called and whether or not it has the propensity to get out of hand fast.
By the middle of the regular season, I believe it’ll start to normalize itself and we won’t notice it as much, much like how the league softened up on the new “quarterback protection rules” that left Clay Matthews fearful of his money running dry from fines.
But let’s shift the focus to the Los Angeles Chargers and what we learned from interviews and press meetings throughout the week.
Telesco believes Thomas Davis will be a catalyst for the linebacker group
Pete Schrager from Good Morning Football sat down with Telesco earlier in the week to talk about how the Chargers have moved on from their loss to New England Patriots in the divisional round, as well as to get some thoughts behind their free agent signings, veteran linebacker Thomas Davis and quarterback Tyrod Taylor.
“This isn’t your typical GM move- you start looking for the oldest linebacker you can find.” he began.
“First of all, he’s playing at a very high level, still. He can help out Denzel Perryman. We have two young guys, Kyzir White and Jatavis Brown, he’s going to help them out.”
Telesco went on to mention that, when it came to signing Taylor to back-up Philip Rivers, they wanted to bring in a quarterback that they still consider a starting-caliber talent.
“God forbid, knock on wood, something ever happens to Philip, we want someone who can walk through the door (and) keep moving the football, keep moving the offense.”
The battle for FS is between Jaylen Watkins and Rayshawn Jenkins
Lynn said if the season started today, Rayshawn Jenkins and Jaylen Watkins would battle it out for starting job at FS, but he didn't rule out adding competition at that spot through FA or the draft.— Eric Williams (@eric_d_williams) March 26, 2019
According to Lynn’s comments, it doesn’t look like recently re-signed safety Adrian Phillips will be in the mix to fill the other safety position opposite Derwin James. As things stand, it looks to be up in the air between Jaylen Watkins (5-11, 194) and former 2017 fourth-round pick Rayshawn Jenkins (6-1, 220). Watkins might be the favorite, due to the fact he almost took the position over Jahleel Addae in 2018.
However, Jenkins saw an increase in snaps towards the end of the regular season and, coupled with Watkins coming off a torn-ACL, Jenkins may be sitting on the inside track heading into offseason workouts which begin next month.
Lynn is still committed to Forrest Lamp
Chargers HC Anthony Lynn reiterated that Forrest Lamp will get a chance to compete for a starting job at guard, but he wants to develop his versatility as a tackle so he can be active on game days. Lynn said Bolts are good at tackle with Russell Okung and Sam Tevi.— Eric Williams (@eric_d_williams) March 26, 2019
Any new news about Lamp is welcomed news in my eyes. The catch is that it’s roughly more of the same.
Similar to last offseason, Lynn is reiterating that Lamp has all the opportunity in the world to fight for a starting guard spot. But the next comment is what really peaks my interest:
“...but he wants to develop his versatility as a tackle so he can be active on game days.”
Why isn’t Lamp already good enough to be active on game days? What are we missing here?
This tells me that the ability to play both guard and tackle is the quickest way to find yourself active on Sundays when you are a reserve linemen. But...Lamp has experience playing tackle...he did it for four years while at Western Kentucky. I just don’t understand the current state of Lamp if things are still so up-in-the-air about his future.
And then there’s the last part: “Lynn said Bolts are good at tackle with Russell Okung and Sam Tevi.”
Does that mean the Chargers are “good” with not taking another tackle on day one or two of the draft? I don’t think I can believe that, but Lynn isn’t one to usually sugarcoat things too much.
Hunter Henry will be ready to rock...ON MY BIRTHDAY
Lynn said Hunter Henry is expected to be full-go once offseason voluntary work begins on April 15.— Eric Williams (@eric_d_williams) March 26, 2019
This year, the Chargers begin their off-season voluntary on April 15th, a.k.a Tax Day, a.k.a the day I was born. Henry should be right as rain when mid-April rolls around and I, for one, cannot wait to see number 86 running around out there again, especially after the slight tease we all got when he was active against the Patriots in January.
Another Antonio Gates carousel ride
Lynn said the return of Antonio Gates is “absolutely” still a possibility. “We have to look and see where we are at free-agent wise and money-wise, and just see how some of these things work out. We explained that to him, so we’re in wait-and-see mode right now,” Lynn said.— Eric Williams (@eric_d_williams) March 26, 2019
No surprise here. The possibility of Gates coming back for another season is still real and, for what it’s worth, I’m going to continue to believe this will happen until it just doesn’t.
Even with Henry out for the entirety of the season, Gates was still relegated to a third-down and red zone role. Although he only caught 28 balls for 333 yards and two touchdowns, Ol’ Reliable was still good for a clutch catch or two throughout the season, giving us more than a few nostalgic moments along the way.
Just get ready for all of the “Will Gates return to the Chargers?” segments to come and go over the next four or five months.