Melvin Gordon ending holdout, will report to Chargers

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  • By Grant Gordon NFL.com
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Melvin Gordon is holding out no longer.

The Chargers running back, whose holdout for a better contract began in training camp and carried on through the first three weeks of the season, will report to the team on Thursday, NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported.

Gordon will not play in the Chargers' Week 4 game in Miami, but is planning to be back in the fold with his teammates, Rapoport added.

Searching for a better deal than his current one, Gordon is set to make $5.6 million in base salary in 2019 -- the last year in his contract. The 26-year-old was reportedly offered $10 million per season, but the Chargers never moved to a greater sum. The team likewise granted the back permission to seek a trade, but nothing ever came to fruition and now Gordon returns to the Bolts, whose running game has done well, but the team overall has struggled to a 1-2 start.

According to Over the Cap, Gordon's $10.7 million total contract value is 27th in the league, trailing players such as Mike Davis, Rex Burkhead, Chris Thompson and Dion Lewis. His average salary of $2.7 million is also 27th.

It's a far cry from how he's produced, as Gordon is the only running back in the league with 10-plus scrimmage touchdowns in each of the last three seasons. Since 2015, Gordon has tallied 1,079 touches, which is second only to Rams running back Todd Gurley's 1,229.

With his return, Gordon ensures he will have an accrued season and can therefore become a free agent next season. It's also the second-to-last NFL holdout, as left tackle Trent Williams continues his absence from the Washington Redskins.

As for this season, sitting at 13th in the NFL in rushing, the Chargers' running attack has been led by Austin Ekeler (160 rushing yards) and Justin Jackson (142). Accommodating as the duo has been, Gordon almost surely improves the offense as a whole.

Gordon had 885 yards rushing in just 12 games last season and 1,375 scrimmage yards with 14 total touchdowns to earn his second Pro Bowl trip.

One of the premier running backs in the league, Gordon is not paid as such despite his holdout. Nonetheless, in four NFL seasons, Gordon has missed nine games. So at the very least, he should have fresh and healthy legs.

And for a Chargers team that's dealt with a rash of injuries and setbacks, Gordon's return is no doubt a welcomed turn of events. Though he'll still be missing from the field against the winless Dolphins on Sunday, Gordon is believed to be zeroing in on a return against the Broncos in L.A. on Oct. 6.

One of the best running backs in football is holding out no longer and returning to a Sunday coming soon.

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