Photo via Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports
The AFC West, without a doubt, is the best division in football and is only getting better. A major reason for the division’s recent success is each team’s ability to force turnovers.
According to Bleacher Report’s Doug Farrar, the AFC West possesses four of the top-10 ball hawks in the NFL, which includes Los Angeles Chargers cornerback Casey Hayward at No. 9.
During his first season as a Charger, Hayward hauled in seven interceptions, giving him the most in the NFL. Now, Hayward is the unquestioned No. 1 cornerback in Los Angeles and is a lockdown defender in the NFL.
[irp posts=”12054″ name=”Oakland Raiders’ Reggie Nelson top-10 ball hawk in NFL”]
In 2016, the Chargers luckily signed him to a cheap deal that would pay him just over $5 million per year for three seasons (2016-18). If he hit the open market, Hayward would easily get a contract worth over $10 million per year.
As such, Hayward is the perfect free agent signing with him still in his prime (27-years-old) and at a major discount. These types of moves, in today’s salary cap era, are crucial to building a perennial contender.
Thanks to Chargers general manager Tom Telesco, who has found bargains and drafted well, Los Angeles should be contending for a while with bargains like these.