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Telesco: Bolts won't make splash in free agency

Published on NewsOK Modified: March 8, 2013 at 6:50 pm •  Published: March 8, 2013
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Asked the priorities on the Chargers' list of players set to become unrestricted free agents, Telesco mentioned Vasquez and kicker Nick Novak. The new GM said the Chargers have spoken with those players' agents, but "there's nothing to report. The market will dictate a lot."

The major offseason focus will be rebuilding the offensive line. Quarterback Philip Rivers, the Chargers' $93 million man, was under siege most of the season. Having to scramble for his well-being helped contribute to 22 turnovers — giving him 47 in two seasons — and he was sacked 49 times.

"We've got some work to do there and we've got to attack it a lot of different ways," Telesco said. "The offensive line is five guys and you need seven or eight that can play. The chance of getting your five guys through 16 games isn't always good. You don't want to be in a situation where one guy gets hurt and the backup that's coming in gives you a huge dropoff. We've got to get seven or eight guys that we feel good about. Between free agency, the draft, waiver wire, maybe some guys that come out on the street, trades, we've got to attack it all different ways. We're not going to go in and fix it one way."

Left tackle remains a big question mark. Jared Gaither was signed to a four-year, $24.5 million contract after playing well in the final five games of 2011. But he developed a mysterious back injury early in training camp and was slow to return, raising questions about his work ethic. He played in only four of the first 10 games before injuring his groin and going on injured reserve.

Telesco said he recently spoke by phone with the 6-foot-9, 335-pound Gaither.

"It went fine," Telesco said. As for the big tackle's future with the team, "There's nothing to report with him right now," the GM said.

Among changes that need to be made, Telesco said, are getting younger and adding more speed, particularly on offense.

Telesco, who hired Mike McCoy as head coach, said the obvious strength of the team is Rivers. He also likes the core of young players on defense, including linemen Corey Liuget and Kendall Reyes, linebackers Donald Butler and Melvin Ingram, plus cornerbacks Marcus Gilchrist and Shareece Wright.

The Chargers have the 11th overall pick in the draft, which starts April 25.