3:08pm: Cox has officially been released, the Chargers announced today (Twitter link via Ricky Henne of Chargers.com).
1:46pm: The Chargers have informed cornerback Derek Cox they plan to release him, according to Michael Gehlken of the San Diego Union-Tribune (via Twitter). It’s the second cap-clearing move of the day for the Chargers, who are also parting ways with fullback Le’Ron McClain.
Cox, who signed a lucrative multiyear contract a year ago with the Chargers, will hit the market again just one year into the four-year deal. Cox’s $4.25MM base salary for 2014 was set to become guaranteed later this month, so San Diego avoids having to pay that figure. However, with three years’ worth of prorated bonus money accelerating onto this year’s cap, the move will leave $3.9MM in dead money on the Chargers’ books for 2014, creating just $1.65MM in cap savings.
After a solid contract year with the Jaguars in 2012, Cox didn’t play well in San Diego this past season, ranking 104th among 110 qualified cornerbacks, according to Pro Football Focus’ grades. The 27-year-old lost his starting job during the season’s second half, and will be looking to be bounce back on a new team in 2014. As an NFL veteran, Cox won’t have to clear waivers, so he’ll immediately be eligible to sign elsewhere.