Chargers general manager Tom Telesco wants Melvin Gordon to be with the team long term.
The 26-year-old running back wants an extension from Los Angeles and was placed on the reserve/did not report list Wednesday after he did not arrive at training camp. Telesco discussed the situation with Gordon when he addressed the media later in the day.
“Look, we drafted Melvin in the first round for a reason,” Telesco said, via the Southern California News Group. “Traded up to take him. Obviously, we value him and the position to do that and we would like to sign him to an extension.
“I’ve read a lot of the stuff. I think he’s been pretty professional with everything. Do I condone holding out? No, I don’t condone (it). But I think he’s been pretty professional with his comments from what I’ve seen.”
The Chargers originally selected Gordon out of Wisconsin with the No. 15 pick in the 2015 draft. He has rushed for 3,628 yards and scored 38 total touchdowns during his four-year career.
“He’s an excellent player,” Telesco said. “He’s tough. Great work ethic. Represents the organization extremely well. But he’s not here. I understand his thoughts and opinions on what he’s going through. I always look at the player’s side. I can see it. Doesn’t mean I agree with it, but I can kind of see what his thought process is.”
Gordon is set to enter the final year of his rookie contract, which will pay him about $5.6 million, according to Spotrac.
“We’re lucky that we got a strong running back group of guys that we’ve seen play before,” Telesco said. “I’m not naive. I know we’re better with Melvin Gordon, but we have a strong group of guys that are here.”
Gordon will “sit as long as he has to,” his agent, Fletcher Smith, said earlier this month during an interview with SiriusXM NFL Radio.