It’s a bit surprising that the organization is moving on from Johnson considering his solid season in 2020. The 2019 undrafted free agent finished his second professional season with 23 touches for 415 yards from scrimmage and three touchdowns. The 25-year-old also got some run on special teams, including six kick returns.
Tranquill has the best shot of establishing a role with the Chargers in 2019. While Los Angeles did add free agent Thomas Davis, the team is only rostering 11 linebackers at the moment (not including undrafted rookies). Plus, Tranquill previously played safety in college, and defensive coordinator GusBradley will surely look for creative ways to capitalize on the rookie’s versatility. The Notre Dame product finished the 2018 season having compiled 86 tackles and 3.5 sacks.
Egbuleshould also have a chance to rise up the linebackers depth chart. At the very least, the sixth-rounder out of Houston should contribute on special teams, and his speed will put him in position for plenty of tackles. Egbule wrapped up his collegiate career with 69 tackles and two sacks.
Stick is another intriguing prospect, but mostly because of his position. PhilipRivers and TyrodTaylor will start the season atop the Chargers’ depth chart, but Stick will have an opportunity to compete with CardaleJones for that third spot. Last season, Stick completed a career-high 62.3-percent of his passes for 2,752 yards, 28 touchdowns, and seven interceptions. He also added another 677 rushing yards.
Following today’s moves, the Chargers still have three unsigned draft picks: first-round defensive tackle Jerry Tillery, second-round safety Nasir Adderley, and third-round offensive tackle Trey Pipkins.
The latest 2019 draft pick signings from around the AFC:
Tight end Trevon Wesco is now the first Jets rookie under contract, as the West Virginia product signed his deal today, tweets Brian Costello of the New York Post. A more-than-willing blocker, Wesco didn’t post much production at West Virginia, managing only a single reception in both 2016 and 2017 before totaling 26 catches last year. Still, in a New York offense that’s set to run through Le’Veon Bell, Wesco could see the field, especially given that incumbent Jets tight end Chris Herndon graded as one of the NFL’s worst run-blockers in 2018, per Pro Football Focus.
The Steelers announced that they’ve signed a pair of draft choices, inking both fifth-round tight end Zach Gentry and sixth-round linebacker Ulysees Gilbertto rookie deals. Of the two, Gentry likely has the easier path to playing time not only due to his draft status, but because Gilbert is stuck behind Devin Bush, Mark Barron, and Vince Williams, and Tyler Matakevich at linebacker. Gentry, who posted 32 receptions for 514 yards during his final season at Michigan, will likely see a good deal of special teams duty, but could be involved in Pittsburgh’s offense if Vance McDonald — who has never completed a full 16-game slate — goes down.
The Chargers have signed seventh-round defensive tackle Cortez Broughton, according to Adam Caplan of SiriusXM NFL Radio (Twitter link). Broughton is the first Los Angels draft choice to sign his rookie deal.