Keenan Allen cut rumors shot down by Chargers GM Tom Telesco

Chargers GM: No plans to cut Keenan Allen originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago

Sounds like fans’ dreams that the Bears may have a chance to land wide receiver Keenan Allen in free agency are dashed before the new league year even begins. Chargers GM Tom Telesco spoke with Peter Schrager on Good Morning Football on Wednesday, and said he has no plans to release the veteran playmaker.

“Keenan Allen, to me, he’s our Andre Reed, he’s our Charlie Joiner,” said Telesco, referring to Reed, who played 15 seasons in Buffalo and Joiner, who played 11 seasons with the Chargers. “He’s an incredible football player, we have a great quarterback, we need weapons around him. There’s never been any thought of (cutting Allen). So, he’s with us, and between him and Mike Williams and Josh Palmer, we think that’s a great three receivers for our quarterback.”

Speculation began that the Chargers could cut Allen when taking a look at their salary cap situation. According to Spotrac, the Chargers are ~$22 million over the cap. Allen is set to carry a $21.7 million cap hit this year, and cutting him before the new league year begins could save the team nearly $15 million, per Spotrac.  However, GMs get creative when creating cap space all the time by restructuring deals to move money around. Telesco will have several options at his disposal to become cap compliant that wouldn’t require a move as drastic as cutting Allen.

Allen is still regarded as one of the best route runners in the game, and a premiere slot receiver where he played 59.5% of his snaps last season. His 2022 campaign was limited to really only seven full games due to a nagging hamstring injury, but when he was healthy towards the end of the year, Allen was still dominant. From Week 12 - Week 18, he averaged 7.9 catches and 83 yards per game. He caught four touchdowns over those seven games. Average that over a full season and it equals an incredible 134-1,411-10 campaign.

Over his 10-year career, Allen has 796 receptions for 9,287 yards and 52 touchdowns. He made five-straight Pro Bowls from 2017-2021.

Click here to follow the Under Center Podcast.