Now that the San Diego Chargers have filled out most of their coaching staff, new GM Tom Telesco will have to begin the tough decisions of how to rebuild and restructure a roster that is in dire need of improvement in some key areas.
In the spirit of “addition by subtraction,” here are four quick cuts that will leave the team (and its fans) instantly and infinitely better off. By the way, these are all players whose contracts expire in 2013.
There is no way that newly retained defensive coordinator John Pagano will be able to take the next step with his defense with a leaky secondary.
Cason became a starter after Antonio Cromartie was let go. Cason has been burned as often as Cromartie was, but he has had very few of the big plays that his predecessor had.
Cason isn’t the divisive presence that Cromartie was, and I will leave the question of whether this Pro Bowl cornerback is truly deserving of the honor or beneficial to his team up to Jets fans.
But I do know that Cason is often light years off the ball, and the defense looks better any time he’s not on the field.
This will be a pretty easy decision for Telesco. Jammer clearly can’t stay with his man any more.
For his first few years, he was known for getting burned and flagged in big spots. To his credit, he redeemed himself and played well in his last three playoff campaigns.
However, it’s time to begin anew. I don’t think the Bolts are going to use him at safety. I also don’t know if a defensive backfield with Marcus Gilchrist and Shareece Wright is the answer.
However, at this point, both guys show a lot more promise than Jammer and Cason.
Unfortunately, Jeromey Clary doesn’t look like he’s going anywhere. His deal isn’t up until 2015.
Then again, Jared Gaither will most likely be let loose, and this is a new GM we’re talking about. The offensive line will undoubtedly be Telesco’s first order of business as he attempts to rebuild a team around Philip Rivers.
Green is a guy who wouldn’t be starting anywhere else, and if the Chargers truly want to rehabilitate Rivers’ career, they can’t have liabilities like that up front.
Micheal Spurlock, who was initially released by the Chargers, made an instant contribution on both offense and special teams.
Spurlock will be free agent, so this move is that much easier. I don’t know what the future will hold for Eddie Royal (or Robert Meachem, for that matter), but Spurlock already looks to be a better receiver than Goodman ever was.
There will be other questions this offseason. Shaun Phillips will be a free agent, and it will be interesting to see what Telesco does.
A.J. Smith’s legacy went from being about the guys he drafted to the guys he let go. That’s what three non-playoff seasons (on the heels of a “one-and-done”) will do to you in the NFL.