The Chargers will be moving on from WR Vincent Jackson and T Marcus McNeill, at least if the comments from A.J. Smith are any indication. The embattled general manager talked about Jackson and McNeill in the past tense in a report in the San Diego Union-Tribune.
- “We lost a couple of great players today, and it hurts,” Smith said in response to a question about the Chargers being better with Jackson and McNeill. “We are trying to build a championship team, and losing the services of both Vincent and Marcus just made that more difficult — but not impossible. In due time, Coach (Norv) Turner will name two new starters. We will rally as a team, compete and try to win as many games as we can.”
The Chargers recently signed WR Josh Reed and T Tra Thomas in anticipation of Vincent and McNeill holding out until November. Both Jackson and McNeill are expected to rejoin the team in November to accrue a season.
The Chargers’ reign as AFC West champions could certainly be coming to an end. NFL icon Gil Brandt said in his chat yesterday that contract squabbles can derail good teams.
This is also a huge blow to fantasy enthusiasts, too. Jackson is a Top 10 fantasy WR, or near it depending on your rankings. Jackson’s loss also impacts the value of QB Philip Rivers, who is expected to lean on talented but untested receivers such as Malcom Floyd, Legedu Naanee and Buster Davis. And what about running back Ryan Mathews? This could work in concert with Norv Turner‘s desire to give the rookie 320 attempts.