San Diego released Brown on Friday before Sunday’s win over the Cleveland Browns so they could add depth to the offensive line with the addition of Ola to the active roster.
The move signals that the Chargers believe one of the three starters from the offensive line who missed the Cleveland game over the weekend will be back in left tackle King Dunlap (concussion), left guard Orlando Franklin (ankle) and center Chris Watt (groin).
Franklin was in a walking boot on the sideline on Sunday, while Dunlap is dealing with a history of concussion issues. But Watt appeared solid going through pre-game warm-ups on Sunday and looks like he has a chance to make it back for Monday’s game against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Brown’s $3 million salary for the 2015 season was guaranteed when the Chargers kept him on the Week 1 roster. Brown serves as an experienced backup for rookie Melvin Gordon, and also is a third-down back who Philip Rivers trusts who could fill in for Danny Woodhead.
After a four-game suspension for violating the NFL’s policy on performance enhancing drugs, tight end Antonio Gates returned to the facility this week. He doesn’t have to be added to the active roster until Oct. 13. During that time he can practice with the team, so essentially the Chargers have an extra roster spot for this week.
“It’s definitely good to have a guy of his caliber back,” running back Danny Woodhead said. “It’s not a bad thing to have a Hall of Fame tight end back in the locker room.”