The Los Angeles Chargers have signed defensive tackle Linval Joseph to a two-year 17 million dollar contract, with two million more in incentives. I’ve written a few times over the last couple of weeks how the Chargers really needed to bolster the starting DT spot.
They’ve got superstar quality around the edge with Bosa and Ingram, and young depth they have been adding over the last couple of drafts. But if you’ve watched as much Chargers football as I have the last couple of years, you’re probably tired of watching them get gashed up the middle for huge chunk plays.
The Chargers gave up almost 113 yards on the ground per game last season. This probably attributed to the reason why they closed out so many games with under a six-point spread.
Now Enter Linval Joseph. A guy I think is going to be a great signing for the Chargers. Ideally, as I’ve said, I wanted to see them just pay the money for Javon Hargraves and create an identity for years to come as a fearsome young, monstrous defensive line. Without having to pay the sticker shock of Hargrave, I think the Chargers have done well for themselves in the situation. Joseph is definitely in that second tier of available DT’s, after being cut by the Vikings.
Joseph played college ball at East Carolina University and would go on to be taken in the second round by the Giants. He would help lead the Giants to a SuperBowl in 2011 over the Pats as a part of that mean defense that had Justin Tuck, JPP, and a few other big names.
He was named to the Pro Bowl in 2016 and 2017 while being named part of the NFL’s Top 100 Players twice. He’s an absolutely massive man, coming in generally around 330 pounds.
He possesses an underrated burst off the line and is consistently agile. His skill set is also fairly refined being that he has multiple moves to get around linemen. After moving to the Vikings as one of the marquee moves Mike Zimmer made to that defense when he took over, he was solid for years. In 2018 Joseph had a couple of injuries to his knee and shoulder that cost him three games in the 2019 season. He also just didn’t play as many snaps as he’s used too.
Coming off a couple of surgeries and moving up in age, it’s easy to see why NFL teams, specifically the Vikings, are moving past Joseph. I think we see this all the time in sports, where a guy maybe takes a step back because of injuries and the team moves on in a different direction (hint, hint Cam Newton), but finds a way to be super useful when given an extra lease on life.
Considering how much the Chargers paid Joseph, and the fact that had he played for LA last season he would have been their highest-rated DT according to PFF, this should still be an excellent signing.
The Chargers receive a B+ on this signing, Joseph is an absolute beast and will aid in stopping the run. It’s never a bad time to swoop on a crafty Pro-Bowl quality vet, on a cheap contract who’s looking to prove he’s not washed.