I will be doing a series of articles that will be taking a methodical team by team approach to next year’s possible free agents. I will be starting with the team that has the least amount of salary cap space and ending with the team with the most. I will try to give a brief description of as many of the possible free agents as I can. I will also be looking for players that might be salary cap cuts in order for their teams to make room to sign some of these possible free agents. Any information anyone else can contribute on these players would be very much appreciated.
The San Diego Chargers are projected to be $21,726,996 UNDER the cap (all salary info via Over The Cap) for 2017 and have 46 players under contract. The main player to look for here is Melvin Ingram.
Dollar figures listed are player’s 2016 cap hit.
RB Danny Woodhead - $3,000,000
Danny Woodhead is 31 years old and was originally picked up by the Jets as an undrafted free agent in 2008. Woodhead was released by the Jets and signed by the Patriots in September of 2010 where he of course instantly became an overachiever by rushing and receiving for a combined 926 yards. He signed with the Chargers in 2013. Unfortunately Woodhead suffered a torn ACL in September of this year which is a huge setback for a running back of his age.
S Jahleel Addae - $2,553,000
Jahleel Addae is 26 years old and was picked up by the Chargers as an undrafted free agent in 2013. Addae has 29 tackles and one pass defended this year. Pro Football Focus has him rated as the 13th best safety this season. Something I would be very critical of with his limited snap count.
34OLB Melvin Ingram - $7,751,000
Melvin Ingram is 26 years old and was drafted by the Chargers in the first round of the 2012 draft. Ingram has 43 tackles, six sacks, two forced fumbles and three passes defended this year. The Chargers exercised his fifth year option this season, and I would not be surprised to see them use the franchise tag on him if they cannot get a long-term deal done.
34DT Sean Lissemore - $1,750,000
Sean Lissemore is 29 years old and was originally drafted by the Cowboys in the seventh round of the 2010 draft. Lissemore showed some strong grades as a nose tackle for the Chargers before injuring a shoulder which caused him to miss the end of last season and all of this season. He might be an interesting player to look at if the Chargers don’t extend him.
ILB Manti Te’o - $1,645,772
Manti Te’o is 25 years old and was drafted by the Chargers in the second round of the 2013 draft. Te’o might be a great player if he could ever stay healthy. He missed time in two seasons with foot injuries, then had an ankle injury last season, and now has a torn Achilles this season. He has only 222 tackles in almost 4 years and his PFF scores have only been good in 2014. Watch out for the catfish Te’o. I don’t know what kind of price tag he is going to have but I have a feeling it will be too high.
QB Kellen Clemens - $680,000
Kellen Clemens is 33 years old and was originally drafted by the Jets in the second round of the 2016 draft. Clemens has been floating around the league as a backup for many years before being picked up by the Chargers to do the same in 2014. Clemens has a career completion percentage of 54.6 and a quarterback rating of 69.4.
TE Jeff Cumberland - $443,000
Jeff Cumberland is 29 years old and was originally picked up as an undrafted free agent by the Jets in 2010. I really don’t see anything about Cumberland after he was picked up by the Chargers this year. He had only five receptions in 2015, and has no stats for this year.
RB Dexter McCluster - $670,558
Dexter McCluster is 28 years old and was originally drafted by the Chiefs in the second round of the 2010 draft. McCluster was waved in the final year of his three year $12,000,000 contract by the Titans and was signed by the Chargers in September before he was put on the Reserve/Non Football Injury list with a fractured forearm that occurred in some freak accident at his home on November 4. He really hasn’t done much since 2013.
RB Ronnie Hillman - $268,235
Ronnie Hillman is 25 years old and was originally drafted by the Broncos in the third round of the 2012 draft. Hillman was released by Denver in September of this year after having 863 yards rushing with a 4.2 average per rush last season. He signed with the Vikings in September and was in November before being signed by the Chargers after McCluster’s freak accident.
34DE Damion Square - $566,176
Damion Square is 27 years old and was originally picked up by the Eagles as an undrafted free agent in 2013. Square was suspended by the NFL for the first four games of 2016 for missing a drug test in January. I would definitely pick Square up for cheap if he is available. He hasn’t played much but he is rated pretty high as a run defender by Pro Football Focus and would add some cheap competition in camp.
34OLB Tourek Williams – $701,515
Tourek Williams is 25 years old and was drafted by the Chargers in the sixth round of the 2013 draft. Williams has played sparingly during his NFL career. He has 44 tackles, one forced fumble and two sacks.