Today marks 14 days since teams and players started coming together and signing deals ahead of the 2021 NFL league year. Tons of old faces are in new places, including some guys you maybe thought wouldn’t play anywhere else.
With it being another week down, it’s time to check in and see how some media outlets are grading out the Chargers’ free agent class thus far.
Yesterday, CBS Sports’ Tyler Sullivan gave out grades to all four members of the AFC West. Both the Chargers and Chiefs graded out on top with each receiving an “A-”.
Here’s what Sullivan had to say about his grades for the Bolts:
Similar to the Chiefs, the Chargers’ top priority is to build a wall around reigning Rookie of the Year Justin Herbert to keep him protected as he continues to ascend into a promising NFL career. Los Angeles did that by signing 2020 first-team All-Pro center Corey Linsley to a deal at the start of free agency along with O-lineman Matt Feiler, who has shown the ability to play both guard and tackle. While losing Hunter Henry was a tough blow to the passing game, Jared Cook is a solid veteran replacement at the tight end spot and should be a solid safety valve for Herbert. Bringing back corner Michael Davis was also a savvy move, especially after cutting ties with Casey Hayward.
Thus far, the Chargers have lost eight starters from the 2020 season and have so far replaced four of them with Linsley, Feiler, Aboushi, and Cook. Outside linebacker Kyler Fackrell was the fifth and most-recent signing by the Bolts and he will likely battle Uchenna Nwosu for the open edge spot being vacated by Ingram.
The Chargers have also lost some notable depth players up to this point. Guys like Denzel Perryman and Nick Vigil both provided their fair share of impact plays last year and now that bot have signed elsewhere, the linebacker group is all of a sudden fairly shallow after you top three guys in Kenneth Murray, Drue Tranquill, and Kyzir White.
Overall, I have to agree with Sullivan and his grade of an “A-”. The Bolts haven’t swung for the fences on a bunch of prospects like other teams who started the month with plenty of cap space. They went and sign Linsley to make sure they gave Herbert the type of protection deserves. The additions of Feiler and Aboushi could be some of the best value signings across the league at their position, and Cook is simply a low-floor short-term replacement at tight end who, to be fair, has been quite productive for a guy who is well over 30 years old.
But maybe you disagree with the grade or you just aren’t that bullish on the job the Chargers have done thus far. What do you think of the grade given by Sullivan? Do you agree? Is it too high? Too low? Let me know what you all think.