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Lynn: Chargers Aren't Inquiring About Earl Thomas After Derwin James Injury

Tyler Conway@jtylerconwayFeatured ColumnistAugust 31, 2020

Los Angeles Chargers safety Derwin James makes a catch during an NFL football camp practice, Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2020, in Costa Mesa, Calif. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
Jae C. Hong/Associated Press

Los Angeles Chargers coach Anthony Lynn says the team will not consider signing Earl Thomas after safety Derwin James' knee injury.

"Since you guys are constantly telling me how stacked my secondary is, why the hell would I be looking anywhere else?" Lynn told reporters in response to questions about Thomas.

James went down with a right knee injury in Sunday's practice, and no timetable has been set for his return. The 2018 All-Pro was expected to be the star of Lynn's "stacked" secondary.

The Baltimore Ravensย releasedย Thomas earlier this month after he reportedly punched teammate Chuck Clark in practice, per ESPN's Adam Schefter. It's been surprising to see Thomas, perhaps the best safety of his generation, remain unsigned more than a week after his release.

However, the Chargers are not a natural fit despite James' injury. James nominally plays the strong safety position. Thomas has spent his career at free safety. While some of the duties of the safety positions are interchangeable, Thomas hasn't been asked to play around the line of scrimmage much during his career. Many of James' duties were closer to the line of scrimmage.

The Chargers could adjust their scheme to better fit Thomas' skill set, but the fit isn't seamless. Lynn might want to look at how Desmond King or Alohi Gilman looks in James' spot before acquiring outside help.