As they attempt to snap a four-game losing skid, the Chargers will have some reinforcements back. They activated defensive linemen Melvin Ingram and Justin Jones off IR on Saturday.
Ingram has been out since Week 2 with a knee injury. This year’s tweaked IR policy allows teams to shelve players for just three weeks, and the longtime Bolts defensive end will miss the minimum number of contests before returning to team with Joey Bosa on the edge.
This stretch of games will be key for Ingram, who lobbied for a new contract but failed to secure it during a brief training camp hold-in. The Bolts extended Ingram in 2017, and his contract expires at season’s end. Bosa signed an NFL-high (for defenders) $27MM-per-year deal in August, topping Ingram’s $16MM-AAV deal as the top Chargers contract.
It will be difficult for the Bolts to give Ingram a major raise ahead of his age-32 season in 2021, though Justin Herbert‘s rookie contract will make that easier than it would have been with Philip Rivers‘ deal on L.A.’s books. But Ingram showing good form in his team’s final 11 games would strengthen his bargaining position in free agency.
A third-year defensive tackle, Jones will also miss the minimum number of games. He went down with a shoulder injury. The Chargers have used the 2018 third-round pick as a starting defensive tackle over the past two seasons.
The Chargers also promoted running back Troymaine Pope from their practice squad and waived wide receiver Jason Moore and defensive end Jessie Lemonier.
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