Free agency is right around the corner so there's no better time to get acclimated to the ins-and-outs than now.
Here's what you need to know.
March 14-16: Legal Tampering Period
- The legal tampering period in which teams can contact and negotiate with the agents of players who are scheduled to become unrestricted free agents.
- It runs from 9:00 a.m. PT on March 14 to 12:59:59 p.m. PT on March 16.
March 16: New League Year Begins (1:00 p.m. PT)
- The new league year begins, kicking off the official start of free agency. Agreed-upon trades and signings can be announced.
Unrestricted Free Agents (20)
|Chris Harris Jr.
|North Carolina State
|Michael Schofield III
|North Carolina Central
Restricted Free Agents (2)
Exclusive Rights Free Agents (3)
|Donald Parham Jr.
WHAT TOM TELESCO HAS SAID
On the Chargers' cap space this year:
"We have a lot of cap space this year so we have to balance the players that we have that their contracts are expiring how we can bring them back, but also look at from the outside of UFA's who we can bring in and how that's all going to work together. That's what we are still working on right now.
"We try to be aggressive every year, it just depends what our resources are and what our circumstances are at that point...the goal every year is the same, the goal is to challenge and compete for a championship."
On the potential of 'being more aggressive' this offseason:
"I feel like we've been aggressive. It may not have been the aggressive that you think is there, but we've used free agency and we've been selective with it. Obviously, you guys kind of see where we are with that. I just don't believe, no matter what cap space you have, you can't build a team through free agency, but you can certainly supplement it. We were aggressive with [C] Corey Linsley last year. We've always been selective with it, more than anything else, to supplement our roster. We're in this to win every year. Everyone has a different definition of aggressive, but there's certainly a sense of urgency every year with how he put it together."
On 're-tooling' the defensive roster:
"We had some players there, it just didn't quite get to where it needed to be this year. It doesn't mean that we can't get there next year. There's going to be some addition and subtraction to this football team, not just on the front, but in all three levels. It's just kind of natural. But yes, there will probably be some characteristics that are a little more important with what we're asking players to do now, than, say, before, but that's nothing new to us, that's not like a new phenomenon for us."
On the use of analytics and data-gathering:
"I really like where we are with that right now. It's not exactly perfect or a finished product, but I like how we're using the information that we have, whether it's coaching or whether it's in player acquisition, just to try and increase our odds of making the right decision. It's a probability-based decision-making processes. That's what it all comes down to. We're trying to put ourselves in the best possible chance to make that decision, rather than just kind of making it from your gut of what you think could happen. 'Well, I'd like to see some data behind that to help us make that decision.' It's just a factor just helps us, more than anything else. Doesn't make a decision for us, but it makes that decision, hopefully, a better probability of being successful."
On the opportunity of bringing in more players that fit Brandon Staley's scheme:
"I'm not going to look at the offense and just say, 'We're all ready to go.' It's a complete look, a balanced look. Last year, the offensive line, but the offensive line had three UFAs [unrestricted free agents], and then our right guard, we released, so there was going to be change there no matter what. Certainly, on the defensive line, right now we have at least three UFAs, I think. It's going to be a complete, balanced look at this football team.
"That's the way you have to build it. You just can't rely on one side of the ball and say, 'It was good last year, we'll be fine moving forward.' Certainly, they'll probably be some change on defense, but that's kind of natural. I think there are a lot of players here that fit in just fine, but it may take a little bit more time. It's like putting a big puzzle together, we're trying to find the best pieces that fit in there. It's not perfect, by any means, but there's still a lot there to work with."
On his philosophy on unrestricted free agency:
"If you've followed us long enough, you can kind of see what our philosophy is. We would rather draft and develop our own and sign our own, wherever we can. We know that it can't be everybody, but that's our desire. We have a lot of cap space this year. It doesn't change how we'll approach free agency. We have to budget for the future. We have got six Pro Bowlers and three of them are on rookie contracts, so that has to be in the back of your mind. But our philosophy on free agency is that we're selective, but we also been relatively successful with those signings.
We have not hit on all of them, nobody does, but as far as the money we've paid out the players and the production that we've received, I've been very happy with that. It's more selective-based. Our first priority is to reward our own, where it's needed. Then, we'll go from there and look on the outside and see what players really fit what we want to do here. Free agency is very difficult to find the right players that come in and fit at the right time. It's very difficult. The draft is much easier, in that regard. But, we have to pair them both, you just can't try and just draft your way through this, you have to add the frequency."
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