Melvin Gordon will not be on the field for the Los Angeles Chargers to kick off the NFL season, and there are increasing signs that he might not be back at all this year.
The running back has not reported to the team as he holds out for a new contract. On Tuesday, ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler reported on Twitter that Gordon would not be reporting for Week 1 and is trying to weigh his options for a trade out of Los Angeles. He noted that Gordon would only report to the team if there was a major development in his quest for a new deal, and the likelihood of that happening appears increasingly small.
Gordon and the Chargers didn’t seem to make any progress in contract talks, with Gordon reportedly asking to be paid among the league’s top running backs, in the range of $13 million to $15 million per season. The Chargers reportedly offered him $10 million per year, which Gordon declined. As ESPN reported, the Chargers this weekend gave Gordon’s representation permission to seek a trade out of Los Angeles and said publicly that they would not be talking about a new contract any more this season.
Amid the stalemate, there seem to be growing signs that Melvin Gordon may not play for the Chargers again. While Gordon would need to report later this season in order to get credit for the final season of his rookie contract, the running back could be on a new team by then.
As Field Yates of ESPN reported on Twitter, Gordon had an exchange with a fan on Twitter that made it seem as if his days with the Chargers are done. The fan had asked why Gordon changed his number with the Chargers, to which Gordon lamented that he paid $40,000 to be able to wear No. 25 and seemed to imply that he will now never get the chance to wear it.
A sign that Melvin Gordon won’t play for the Chargers at all this season? pic.twitter.com/zAHHm3m8dF
— Field Yates (@FieldYates) September 1, 2019
As others noted, Gordon just started following a group of new teams on Instagram. While that may not mean much on its own, the timing of the move made waves and led to more speculation that Gordon is looking for a way out of Los Angeles.
Melvin Gordon trying to slide up in those DMs. Just started following Eagles, Raiders, Falcons and 49ers on IG pic.twitter.com/KIxakwiLXf
— Will Brinson (@WillBrinson) September 2, 2019
It’s not clear yet how the trade market could be for Melvin Gordon, or what the Chargers might be asking in return for the player who would still be obligated to report to them later this season anyway.