COSTA MESA, Calif. (AP) — Right guard Trai Turner was released by the Los Angeles Chargers on Friday, less than a year after he was acquired in a trade from the Carolina Panthers.
Turner was a five-time Pro Bowl selection with the Panthers but didn’t have the same success with the Chargers. He missed seven games last season because of knee and groin injuries.
Turner started at right guard and allowed 19 quarterback pressures last season (one sack, two quarterback hits and 16 hurries). The Chargers offensive line yielded the fourth-most hurries in the league last year. His $11.5 million salary cap number would have been the sixth-highest on the roster going into the start of free agency on Wednesday. Los Angeles has approximately $38.1 million in cap space, which places it among the top seven teams in the league.
Offensive line will be a major priority for general manager Tom Telesco and new head coach Brandon Staley over the next two months. Right tackle Bryan Bulaga is the only regular starter remaining with center Dan Feeney, guard Forrest Lamp and left tackle Sam Tevi slated to be unrestricted free agents.
Besides free agency, the Chargers will have the 13th overall selection in a draft that is considered to have a deep group of offensive linemen.
“I don’t know if the whole offensive line is deep in the draft, but there are certain areas that are better than others,” Telesco said last week about this year’s draft class. “We look at it probably different than you would. I know that the focus is on the first round, but we’re looking through all seven rounds and trying to see where the depth is in different positions. It looks pretty good.”
Los Angeles also announced that it has released linebacker Malik Jefferson, who had five special teams tackles in 13 games last season.
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