One of the Chargers’ top priorities in the build-up to this year’s free agency period was retaining RT Trey Pipkins. They have reportedly done just that, as ESPN’s Lindsey Thiry tweets that an agreement has been reached on a three-year deal to keep him in Los Angeles. The three-year deal is worth $21.75MM, per SiriusXM’s Adam Caplan (on Twitter).
The right tackle spot was lined with several big-name options in this year’s free agent class, and a few lucrative deals have already come about at the position as a result. Pipkins could have tested the market against the Chargers’ best offer, but he will instead remain with the team that drafted him in the third round in 2019.
The 26-year-old operated primarily as a backup across his first three seasons in the league. He took on a full-time starting role for the first time in 2022, however, logging a career-high 898 snaps in 14 regular season games. He dealt with an MCL sprain throughout the campaign, one in which he was charged with 28 pressures allowed in pass protection by PFF. As a result, he earned an overall rating of just 59.2.
It was expected, though, that the Chargers would value Pipkins more than most other teams, and he was thus at or near the top of the team’s to-do list for March. With a new deal in place, the Division II product has financial security to along with an extended opportunity to retain his starting spot on the right edge. The Chargers will now have several young options to choose from at the tackle spots.
Left tackle Rashawn Slater was limited to just three games in 2022 due to a biceps tear. That injury forced Los Angeles to turn to rookie Jamaree Salyer on the blindside, giving them an even more inexperienced tackle tandem for much of the year. While Pipkins underperformed compared to the latter, per PFF, his level of play was sufficient to earn him an extended look on the o-line. All three lineman will now be under contract for 2023 and beyond as the Chargers look to take another step forward next season.