Chargers left tackle Jared Gaither was unable to practice in late July due to spasms and cramps in his back. The team deemed Gaither “day to day” then, but it’s nearing the middle of August and Gaither still isn’t practicing.
Michael Gehlken of the Union-Tribune San Diego confirms that Gaither’s back is “healing slower than the Chargers hoped.” Gaither will not play in the Chargers’ exhibition opener, and “there is some doubt” about his availability for the second week of the preseason.
It’s time for the Chargers to start worrying about Gaither, and the addition of two offensive tackles suggests they probably already are. This is not the first series of back problems for Gaither. San Diego signed Gaither to a four-year, $24.6 million contract in March. $13.5 million of that deal was guaranteed, including an $8 million signing bonus.
For now, undrafted rookie Mike Harris out of UCLA is practicing as the Chargers’ first-team left tackle. Harris, who ran a 5.58 forty-yard dash at the Bruins’ Pro Day, played right tackle in college.
Hopefully, Rivers makes it through tonight’s possession or two against the Packers unscathed.