Chargers News: Austin Ekeler's Commanders Move Motivated by LA Connection

L.A.'s former top running back is getting a new start elsewhere.
Jun 5, 2024; Ashburn, VA, USA; Washington Commanders running back Austin Ekeler (30) carries the ball during OTA workouts at Commanders Park. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports
Jun 5, 2024; Ashburn, VA, USA; Washington Commanders running back Austin Ekeler (30) carries the ball during OTA workouts at Commanders Park. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports / Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports
In this story:

The Los Angeles Chargers under new head coaching hire Jim Harbaugh are looking to emphasize the run game this season, in a new smashmouth offensive approach. Funnily enough, they'll be doing so without their top running back last season, veteran Austin Ekeler. He inked a two-year, $11.4 million deal with the Washington Commanders as a free agent, where he'll play alongside another former top offensive Charger, wide receiver Mike Williams.

Ekeler recently spoke with Kay Adams of "Up & Adams" about his decision to head to D.C. this offseason, and revealed that a lot of his decision came down to his excitement to play for former Los Angeles head coach Anthony Lynn, now the Commanders' run game coordinator.

"Being the most efficient within the scheme that can maximize your talent potential is his philosophy," Ekeler said. "He understands, 'Hey, there's things that I'm gonna be better at than Brian, and vice-versa... He is very big into which players get which plays because, 'Hey, we're setting you up for success with this type of scheme.' It doesn't mean you can't run the plays that might be set up for the other person, but [their thinking is], 'If this is called, ideally we'd like to have this player on the field.'"

Last year, across 14 healthy contests, the 5-foot-9, 200-pound West Colorado product notched 179 carries for 628 total yards and five touchdowns for the 5-12 Bolts. L.A. might miss him in 2023.

More Chargers: Will Los Angeles Live To Regret Trading Keenan Allen?


Published
Alex Kirschenbaum

ALEX KIRSCHENBAUM

Alex Kirschenbaum is a maniacal sports fiend who derives his only pleasure in life from watching adults play children's games.