GM Tom Telesco: Dwight Freeney won't be back

SAN DIEGO -- San Diego Chargers general manager Tom Telesco talked with reporters after new offensive lineman Orlando Franklin was introduced in San Diego for the first time since signing his five-year deal.

Telesco said that he reached out to Dwight Freeney, telling him that the Chargers will not be pursuing the 35-year-old pass-rusher in free agency. Freeney has said that he will not retire and intends to play a 14th season.

"I talked to Dwight a couple days ago, and let him know that we weren't going to pursue another contract with him," Telesco said. "I thanked him for everything he gave us the last two years, and really thanked him for really taking a chance on us a couple years ago when he was a free agent. I was a first-time GM, Mike [McCoy] was a first-time head coach, which was a completely new program here. And he took a chance and signed with us."

Some other tidbits:

  • Telesco said that Franklin will play left guard, and Johnnie Troutman is the team's starting right guard as it stands now. "Last year I thought he did a pretty good job," Telesco said, when asked to evaluate Troutman. "I did. I think he's done a pretty good job there." So if the Chargers were to play a game right now, King Dunlap would start at left tackle, Franklin at left guard, Chris Watt at center, Troutman at right guard and D.J. Fluker at right tackle.

  • Telesco said that the team had Dunlap as the highest-rated left tackle in free agency and Brandon Flower as one of the top two rated cornerbacks available on the open market. Telesco went on to say it was important to sign both of those players to long-term deals, keeping productive players in the fold.

  • Telesco would not talk about players like Ryan Mathews and Eddie Royal moving on to other teams until their deals become official. He did say the possibility remains for Royal to return.

  • However, without Mathews Telesco said he feels good about the running back group, with Danny Woodhead, Donald Brown and Branden Oliver. "I feel like we have three guys right now that we have a lot of confidence in," Telesco said.