Top Reasons The Los Angeles Chargers Should Re-Sign Gerald Everett

Despite the incoming rookie class, the Los Angeles Chargers are still going to need Gerald Everett.

Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Tight end Gerald Everett is an unrestricted agent this year and though he’s not the best on the market, if re-signed, he’ll serve as the stopgap that the Los Angeles Chargers need as they enter a season with very little cap space and a tight budget. 

What Everett Brings To The Los Angeles Chargers 

Everett didn’t reach his 2022 career-highs in 2023, but in a similar fashion, still helped out immensely as the Chargers were again missing one of their star receiving targets, Mike Williams, who was out after Week 3 after tearing his ACL.

Everett had 411 receiving yards, three receiving touchdowns, and 51 receptions in 2023 from 70 targets. He also had multiple fumbles, the most he’s ever had in one season. His average run-blocking grade for 2023 went up a few points from his lowest in 2022, and though he typically plays a pretty small number of pass-blocking snaps, he hasn’t allowed a sack since 2020. 

NFL: Detroit Lions at Los Angeles Chargers
Credit: Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports

On Everett, Pro Football Focus (PFF) on their Free Agent Dashboard noted, “Everett earned Justin Herbert’s trust on critical downs and in the red zone over the past two seasons and has forced 28 missed tackles since 2022, the second most among tight ends…Everett is more of a check down and tunnel screen outlet, averaging more than five yards after the catch in five consecutive seasons with an average depth of target around just six yards, but he can make the occasional contested catch (which was particularly on display in 2022 when he made eight contested snags).”

3 Tight Ends To Watch For Los Angeles Chargers At NFL Draft

Everett is the reliable, not flashy, target. He hasn’t had a season without double digits in first downs since he started in the league. He’s aggressive and shows up when it counts, like during the Wild Card game against the Jags in 2022, which marked his best offense grade (91.1) and most receiving yards (109) of that season. Though his production slipped slightly in 2023, that’s only because Herbert had other targets like Keenan Allen and newly drafted rookie, Quentin Johnston, that he hadn’t had the year prior when Allen was injured. Despite fewer changes to shine, Everett’s 2023 target share was the second highest of the team behind Allen. 

NFL: Los Angeles Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs
Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports

What Should His New Contract Look Like? 

PFF has him on a “1-year deal with a salary of $5.5 million and $4 million guaranteed,” while Spotrac has him at an average salary of $8.6 million on a 2-year contract. 

I think PFF’s prediction is the sweet spot. It’s long enough that he can still be the veteran presence on the team to help any rookies they may draft, but short enough that in case his production isn’t good, the Chargers have a way out.

Though not the youngest option out there at 29, he’s the most equitable and makes the most sense in terms of fit. He knows the team and works well with Herbert, and as he’s been on multiple teams, he has experience learning new systems quickly, so picking up the new offensive scheme of offensive coordinator Greg Roman and head coach Jim Harbaugh shouldn’t be a difficult task.

Gerald Everett has been a constant in the Los Angeles Chargers offense for the last two seasons, and fingers crossed that remains the case for 2024. 

NFL: Los Angeles Chargers at Minnesota Vikings
Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports