Ex-Chargers RB Austin Ekeler signing with Commanders on two-year deal worth up to $11.43M

Ekeler's departure was essentially guaranteed at this point a year ago, when he was upset by the Chargers' unwillingness to discuss a long-term extension, requested permission to seek a trade, found the running back market exceptionally poor and he ultimately agreed to a revised contract that only added incentives to his contract.

With a regime change occurring in Los Angeles and Ekeler approaching his 29th birthday, now was the time to look for employment elsewhere, and he found it in Washington, where he can serve as a pass-catching complement to starter Brian Robinson.

Ekeler won't make more money than he did in his final season in Los Angeles (in fact, he'll make less even if he hits all the incentives), but at this point, it's still the best result for a running back who has amassed 69 total touchdowns in seven seasons. He ranked 89th on Gregg Rosenthal's list of the top 101 free agents, an accurate placement for a running back who lacks the explosiveness that once made him a three-down nightmare for opposing defenses but can still produce as pass catcher.

The combination is ideal in Washington, where the Commanders are moving into a new era under coach Dan Quinn and offensive coordinator Kliff Kingsbury. If anything, Ekeler's experience will benefit a team that lacks proven winners, and he'll still make solid money at a position that isn't a bust in today's NFL.

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