Baseball Magazine

San Diego Chargers Making Moves in Free Agency for a Post-Vincent Jackson Existence

By Beardandstache @BeardAndStache

San Diego Chargers Making Moves in Free Agency for a Post-Vincent Jackson Existence

Photo: Getty Images

- Troy Ballard


It's never easy for a team to lose a receiver the caliber of Vincent Jackson, but the San Diego Chargers are taking the loss in stride and making moves through free agency to replace the Pro-Bowl talent.
With V-Jax sprinting towards the biggest pay check he could find in Tampa Bay, the Chargers decided to write some free agency checks themselves. Most notably signing a series of players on offense to help nurse the Jackson-hangover that Philip Rivers will likely have in 2012.
The Chargers, although not making huge splashes, did make moves that will pay dividends as the offense heads into next season. It may not be V-Jax, but San Diego did snag some steals that aren't being talked about -- so we here at Beard and Stache will.
San Diego's first move was the signing of former New Orleans Saint, Robert Meachem. Although he wasn't the biggest name in New Orleans, Meachem proved that he can play a vital part in any passing attack.
He's a speedster, with the frame of a true NFL receiver, that can torch a secondary if the defense doesn't focus on him. Drew Brees and Meachem had games that were simply unstoppable, and the Chargers are hoping that he develops a similar chemistry with Rivers.
Think of Meachem as comparable to DeSean Jackson, with less speed, but a much better build. Overall -- an excellent pick-up for the Chargers, and he should be starting from day one as a replacement to V-Jax.
Another move, which adds more depth at receiver and special teams, is the signing of former Denver Bronco, Eddie Royal. The former second-rounder found himself buried on the depth chart in Denver, and his production spiked in 2011. But he's still valuable.
Royal may not be the best receiving talent in the NFL, but he can still ice a game with killer returning abilities. Since the departure of Darren Sproles, San Diego's special teams has been lacking that serious threat, and the Chargers have found the cure -- Royal. It's a natural fit and a great pick-up on the cheap.
The last signing worth mentioning isn't actually a receiver at all -- but he will still make an impact on the offense. San Diego picked up what could be the biggest steal of free agency, former Baltimore Raven and Kansas City Chief, Le'Ron McClain.
There is a split party about what McClain's role should be. Some claim he's talented enough as a runner and has the hands to be a running back, others say he's such a good blocker, it would be a waste not to put him at fullback. We like to call him a hybrid.
With the departure of Mike Tolbert from San Diego, McClain will fit in beautifully as the power rusher on short yardage situations, and also as the train-powered lead blocker for Ryan Matthews. But he best part may be McClain's hands out of the backfield, as he has the ability to catch and run like a tight end. It may not seem like it, but McClain was a total steal and will make a huge impact for San Diego.
As stated before, it's almost impossible to replace a talent like Jackson. He was the oil that greased the Chargers passing attack, and San Diego did take a huge hit losing him in free agency. However, the team didn't sit and sulk, instead the front office took the opportunity and signed a set of quality players that were under the radar.
And the Beard and Stache can't wait to see them in powder blue.
Be sure to follow Beard And Stache on Twitter @BeardAndStacheand also Adam @Adam_Parker43, Like our Facebook page HERE!

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