ESPN NFL Insider Field Yates reports that according to a source, San Diego Chargers offensive lineman Jeromey Clary recently reduced his 2014 base salary from $4.55 million to $1.6 million.
Yates says the Chargers now save $2.95 million in cap space. Clary, San Diego starting right guard last season, is currently on the active, physically unable to perform list rehabbing from offseason shoulder and hip surgeries.
Clary is hopeful that he’ll be healthy for 2014 season opener at Arizona on September 8. Rookie Chris Watt and Johnnie Troutman has seen time with the starting offensive line at right guard during training camp with Clary out.
The move was somewhat expected for the 30-year-old Kansas State product, who would have been the fourth-highest paid player on the roster had his contract remained at the original salary.
Clary remains an important part of San Diego’s offensive line. Chargers offensive line coach Joe D’Alessandris values players who can consistently perform with the proper technique in his system.
Clary was part of an effective offensive line unit for San Diego that did a nice job of protecting Philip Rivers and creating running lanes for Ryan Mathews in 2013. Keeping that continuity together, particularly the communication that occurs between a veteran center like Nick Hardwick and Clary, is important.
Clary missed just four games due to injury in the last four years. He plays with pain, adds toughness up front and is considered a leader and one of the foundational players on offense by Telesco. Clary also provides versatility, with the ability to play four of the five offensive line positions.