Melvin Ingram Rumors: Ex-Chargers DE Visiting with Chiefs

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistMarch 20, 2021

Los Angeles Chargers defensive end Melvin Ingram III (54) smiles on the sidelines against the Denver Broncos during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Nov.. 1, 2020, in Denver. The Denver Broncos defeated the Los Angeles Chargers 31-30. (AP Photo/Justin Edmonds)
Justin Edmonds/Associated Press

Former Los Angeles Chargers defensive end Melvin Ingram is reportedly set for a free-agent meeting with the Kansas City Chiefs during the coming week.

Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network reported Saturday it's the first visit for Ingram since hitting the open market after the conclusion of his four-year, $64 million contract with the Bolts.

The 31-year-old North Carolina native is coming off the least productive season of his nine-year NFL career. He recorded just 10 total tackles, one interception and no sacks across seven appearances in 2020. He missed nine contests with a lingering knee injury that landed him on injured reserve twice.

Ingram was previously one of the league's most consistent edge-rushers.

The University of South Carolina product tallied 43 sacks during the five-year period from 2015 through 2019 with at least seven sacks in every season. He earned three straight Pro Bowl selections beginning in 2017.

In all, he posted 360 total tackles, 49 sacks, 29 passes defended, 13 forced fumbles and three interceptions during his time with the Chargers. He said before the 2020 season kicked off he hoped to remain with the organization despite his expiring contract.

"You know I am always looking to stay here, but you never know what the future holds," Ingram said.

Los Angeles could still use a second edge-rusher to pair with Joey Bosa, so it's still possible a reunion may happen. Ingram is at least going to explore other options, though.

The Chiefs are looking to upgrade their pass-rushing group after ranking 19th in the NFL with 32 sacks last season. They also took down Tom Brady just once in the Super Bowl as the legendary signal-caller was given plenty of time in the pocket to pick the KC secondary apart in a 31-9 Tampa Bay Buccaneers win.

Ingram's market will probably trend toward a one-year deal given his injury-plagued 2020 season, the lack of production when he was on the field and the drop in the salary cap for 2021.

It'll represent an opportunity for him to prove he's healthy and effective again before hitting free agency again next year.