Where Chargers’ running back room stands after signing of JK Dobbins

After the Chargers agreed to terms with running back JK Dobbins yesterday, they now stand at five backs on the active roster.

Gus Edwards was signed early on the first day of the free agency to a two-year contract. With Dobbins on the roster, now two former running backs with experience in the Greg Roman system reunite with him in Los Angeles.

Edwards and Dobbins were highly productive with Roman when healthy in Baltimore. Edwards averaged 5.1 yards per carry on over 300 carries with 11 touchdowns in three seasons. On a little over 200 carries, Dobbins averaged 5.9 yards per carry with the same amount of endzone scores in two seasons after he was drafted in 2020.

The question for both backs, particularly Dobbins, is availability. While the nature of the signing is low risk/high reward, Dobbins has played just nine games in the last three seasons after suffering a torn ACL in 2021 and a torn Achilles in 2023. Edwards also tore his ACL in 2021 but has played a full slate of games in three of the last five seasons.

2022 fourth-round selection Isaiah Spiller is still on the roster and will presumably have an opportunity to compete for a spot. Spiller has been active for just 15 of his first 34 career games.

He has often been a healthy scratch for reasons that have to do with his special teams impact. Larry Rountree and Elijah Dotson have been active over him in recent seasons due to special teams coordinator Ryan Ficken trusting their contributions in the kicking game more. Under Jim Harbaugh, Ficken will still have his preferences on special teams. Spiller will either have to contribute there or make an impact as a top-two running back in the rotation itself.

Elijah Dotson and Jaret Patterson were signed to a futures deals at the end of the season. Dotson was active in four games last season due to injuries to the running back room and early special teams contributions. Both are more than likely competing for practice squad spots.

A week away from the NFL draft, the Chargers could still opt to add another running back to the roster. LA has hosted Blake Corum and Isaac Guerendo for top-30 visits in Costa Mesa while speaking to several other rushers at the NFL Combine, Senior Bowl, and pro days.

Story originally appeared on Chargers Wire