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What to do with the Bolts?

Discussion in 'Chargers Fan Forum' started by Johnny Lightning, Jan 21, 2010.

  1. Johnny Lightning

    Johnny Lightning Go Bolts

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    Uncertain salary cap situation could affect decisions on return status of several major players

    By Kevin Acee, UNION-TRIBUNE STAFF WRITER
    Thursday, January 21, 2010


    SAN DIEGO – A.J. Smith won’t admit it. That’s not his way. Makes no difference to him what their status is, he says.
    Remember, the general manager decides who is going to be a Charger and for how long. He’s got a plan and a contingency plan and a contingency plan for the contingency plan.
    But the fact is, the Chargers could benefit greatly in the short-term by having a 2010 NFL season with no salary cap. The team won’t spend more money than usual, and it might actually be able to spend a little less.
    That’s the beauty of their situation.
    The Chargers have five marquee players whose contracts are up and who are due to be unrestricted free agents. But because of the uncertainty of the Collective Bargaining Agreement, all five could be restricted and, thus, under team control for another season.
    If there is an uncapped year, which is what is expected, players with less than six seasons of service would be restricted free agents, instead of four seasons of service required in a capped year.
    That designation will restrict Malcom Floyd, Vincent Jackson, Marcus McNeill, Shawne Merriman and Darren Sproles, along with seven other Chargers.
    It is those five who dominate our list of players on the Chargers’ Most Intriguing Storylines of the Offseason.
    Really, these could be considered the most interesting issues of the next couple of months, as most of them will see resolution by then.
    There are other things to consider and anticipate this offseason, such as a draft in which Smith could look to replace one and possibly two franchise cornerstones. There are places on the roster that can be upgraded. April, May and June will be productive months for all the young players who contributed to a 13-3 record in ’09 to grow even more before next season.
    But first, we must look at what will happen with players on the roster, in order of intrigue:

    Darren Sproles: The Chargers will spend time discussing what to do with one of everyone’s favorite players. They love Sproles and what he provides, but from the team’s perspective it either has to be a long-term contract or Sproles has to be let go. Right? See, Sproles made $6.6 million last season and would be due a 10 percent raise on a one-year tender as a restricted free agent. From Sproles’ perspective, there is little financial motivation to get a long-term deal done. Playing another year for almost $7.3 million and then becoming an unrestricted free agent would be a dream.

    Vincent Jackson: Fast developing into one of the AFC’s elite receivers, there are questions about his long-term future as a Charger only because of some drinking and driving issues. Jackson has a DUI matter pending and likely faces a suspension (one or two games) in 2010. Consider ’10 a trial year for Jackson — no pun intended. The Chargers can put a first-and-third tender on him, virtually assuring no one will try to sign him.

    Antonio Cromartie: Do not be surprised if the team tries to move the uber-talented cornerback with one year remaining on his contract. Cromartie had perhaps his best all-around season, but the Chargers also like Antoine Cason (who got a little bit of a raw deal this season), and Cromartie might have run his course here.

    Shawne Merriman: The best thing for Merriman financially might be to remain a Charger one more season, return to form and reap the benefits on the free agent market. There are some “ifs” involved in there, but Merriman played well in certain capacities and the recovery from his type of knee surgery is said to accelerate in the second post-op season.

    Jamal Williams: He is healthy. But if he comes back, it might have to be at a reduced price, because it will almost certainly be in a reduced role. The Chargers found out this year the value of a defensive line rotation. And with Williams about to be 34 and having been slowed by injuries three straight seasons, it would be beneficial to limit him to about 25 plays and also cut that $5 million salary (plus $1 million roster bonus). The best move, if it’s possible, would be to keep Williams and see if he can approach his old self for those couple dozen plays a game.

    Marcus McNeill: This is pretty simple. The sides almost had a deal two summers ago before McNeill hurt his neck in training camp. He’s healthy. He’s awesome. The team will likely put a high tender on him and try to work out a long-term deal, perhaps into the summer or fall.

    Malcom Floyd: Poor Malcom. Last year, he fell two games shy of being unrestricted and, despite having been a Charger since 2003, “settled” for a $1.54 million one-year tender instead of hitting the market and almost assuredly being paid six or seven times that upfront. Now, he’s probably going to be restricted again. The intrigue here regards Floyd’s desire for security and willingness to sign what would certainly be a lesser contract with the Chargers than he could get if he waited a year, and also how necessary the team sees Floyd in light of what it does with Jackson.

    Jeromey Clary: He’s a restricted free agent and will be back, but he has new competition for the starting job at right tackle. Brandyn Dombrowski kept getting better and deserves a shot.

    Kassim Osgood: All it will take is one team telling him they’ll give him a chance to be a receiver. Osgood, about to play in his third Pro Bowl as a special teamer, is an unrestricted free agent. He is one of Smith’s favorite players ever and hugely popular in San Diego, but he is all but certainly out the door because there are greener contracts elsewhere.

    LaDainian Tomlinson: This is near the bottom of the list, only because it’s a foregone conclusion. The iconic running back is due a $2 million roster bonus and a $5 million salary. There will be no renegotiation, because they did that last year to avoid one this year. The hope here is that it ends amicably, because it’s sad enough he’s leaving without a ring.

    Antonio Gates: This is at the bottom of the list, because he has a year left on his contract. But Gates might be the top priority, because of how much the Chargers love him and his work ethic and because of the career year he had. Now is the time to sign him, though even now it won’t be cheap. Everyone, including Smith, knows the team got the best of Gates in their first contract go-round in 2005. His agent this time: Tom Condon.
     
  2. IFiredCHart

    IFiredCHart Well-Known Member

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    Fixed.
     
  3. Carlsbad_Bolt_Fan

    Carlsbad_Bolt_Fan Well-Known Member

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    WTF???
     
  4. AnteaterCharger

    AnteaterCharger Calibrating Bolttalk, Podcast by Podcast Staff Member Super Moderator Podcaster

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    Cro will be shipped out to whomever wants him for almost any price they want

    Sproles is probably gone too, along with LT
     
  5. matilack

    matilack Take A Knee McCree!!!

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    Cro's expendable because of Cason, but with 1yr left on his deal and AJ not being the type to make big changes with our starters I think it'll take at least a 1st round pick for AJ to even consider moving him.
     
  6. IFiredCHart

    IFiredCHart Well-Known Member

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    I disagree that Cro will have no trade value--even DeAngelo Hall was worth a 2nd rounder, and he cannot find a way around the football field with a friggin map and compass.
     
  7. Thumper

    Thumper WHS

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    We need to ship Shawn Phillips out of town with Cro.

    edit: How the hell did I end up with Phillips as my adopted Bolt? I just can't defend him, he needs to go.
     
  8. IFiredCHart

    IFiredCHart Well-Known Member

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    The Jets have a good defense with no pass rush at all--with our talented safeties, MLBs, and Jammer, our blitz packages should provide enough pressure to allow our coverage to prevent plays from developing.

    I think English provides a much better all-around game than Phillips, and would not mind showing Shawn the door. However, Merriman's package is worth another year of being patient with.
     
  9. Ride The Lightning

    Ride The Lightning Join the Dark Side, we have cookies.

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    Someone will bite hard for Cro because he is the epitome of bling. All flash, no substance.
     
  10. Brundlefly

    Brundlefly Well-Known Member

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    I think we need to keep Merriman. I think letting him go would be a HUGE mistake. Even with not putting up the numbers we're used to, he's a leader on the defense and was injured all year. I don't think we've seen the last of him and if he goes somewhere else he's going to be lighting it up(or should I say something about "lights out" haha) over there and if we play them, I bet he'd put Rivers on his back a few times.
     
  11. BOLTS4LIFE

    BOLTS4LIFE Banned Banned

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    A leader who's great on steroids and ain't s*it without em'?


    NO THANK YOU!!!! HE'S A FRAUD AND NEEDS TO GO!!!
     
  12. NORV4LIFE

    NORV4LIFE NO MORE NORV!!!!!

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    phillips is our best linebacker!
     
  13. HEXEDBOLT

    HEXEDBOLT Don't like it, lump it!!!

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    If the Bolt's can get a running back they will be back in business.
     
  14. NORV4LIFE

    NORV4LIFE NO MORE NORV!!!!!

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    Yep. Legarrette blount!!:tup: Or CJ spiller:tup:
     

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