Chargers RB Austin Ekeler reportedly rescinds trade request, gets $2M incentive boost

Austin Ekeler led the NFL in total touchdowns over the past two seasons. (Photo by Todd Kirkland/Getty Images)
Austin Ekeler led the NFL in total touchdowns over the past two seasons. (Photo by Todd Kirkland/Getty Images)

Austin Ekeler will play for the Los Angeles Chargers in 2023.

Weeks after Ekeler was given permission to seek a trade and said that a return to the Chargers would be the “worst-case scenario,” the veteran running back decided to remain in Los Angeles for the final year of his contract, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter. Though he didn’t renegotiate the new deal he initially sought, the Chargers reportedly added $2 million in incentives to Ekeler’s contract, per Schefter.

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Ekeler signed a four-year, $24.5 million deal with the Chargers in 2020, but has since led the NFL with 38 combined touchdowns from 2021-222. He’ll make $6.25 million in base salary in 2023 with $1.5 million in prorated bonuses and could make $2 million if the undisclosed incentives are reached. Ekeler’s 3,195 total scrimmage yards since 2021 rank fourth among all skill-position players and third among running backs.

The Chargers will certainly be happy to keep Ekeler around for another season. He rounds out a quality collection of offensive weapons for Justin Herbert that includes receivers Keenan Allen, Mike Williams and No. 21 pick Quentin Johnston. Los Angeles needs as much firepower as possible to compete with the Kansas City Chiefs, and Ekeler’s presence certainly raises their ability to score points in the widely competitive AFC.

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