In some regards, the 2022 season was a success for the Los Angeles Chargers. They made the postseason for the first time since the 2018 season and have one of the bright, young stars at the quarterback position in Justin Herbert. But, for the team to reach the heights they are capable of, there is some work to do this offseason.
Last year, the Chargers spent a lot of resources upgrading their defense. They made a trade to acquire Khalil Mack from the Chicago Bears to pair with Joey Bosa as bookend pass rushers. Cornerback J.C. Jackson was signed in free agency to further bolster the pass defense.
Despite those additions, the Chargers’ defense was below average again. While they made some strides when compared to the 2021 season, Los Angeles left a lot to be desired on that side of the ball. Their second-half meltdown against the Jacksonville Jaguars during Super Wild Card Weekend was the icing on the cake as they were outscored 24-3 and lost the game 31-30.
While the pass defense got the job done, it was the run defense that let the Chargers down. They were 28th in rushing yards allowed and gave up the most yards per rush in the league. That was an area that they had hoped Austin Johnson and Sebastian Joseph-Day would shore up but they fell woefully short of expectations.
Looking to improve that area of their defense once again, one free agent that would be a good fit for the Chargers is Dre’Mont Jones. Jones would be a nice upgrade over Morgan Fox in the middle of their defensive line and help get things back on track.
Not only can he get the job done against the run, but Jones also provides the team with another versatile pass rusher. He was truly elite at getting after the quarterback as an interior pass rusher as his 15.9 percent pass-rushing win rate was sixth among all defenders.
The cherry on top for the Chargers would be that acquiring Jones also means that they are weakening one of their direct rivals, the Denver Broncos. They have seen firsthand the impact that Jones can have as he has spent the first four seasons of his career in the Mile High City, suiting up against the Chargers seven times.
In those seven games, Jones has 14 combined tackles, one sack, two tackles for loss, six quarterback hits, one pass defended and one interception. Killing two birds with one stone would be quite an achievement for the Chargers as they look to catch the Kansas City Chiefs but remain ahead of the Las Vegas Raiders and Broncos.