The Los Angeles Chargers are preparing for a highly anticipated 2022 season without Derwin James. The star safety is at training camp but is sitting out as he and the team look to resolve a contract dispute. As one of the key co-stars next to Joey Bosa on the Chargers' defense

Although there is optimism about James and the Chargers agreeing to a contract extension, a new deal is still in the works. Bosa chimed in by saying that James deserves to get paid and that he is one of the best players at his position.

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James has become one of the best safeties in the NFL. The two-time Pro Bowler had a career-high 118 total tackles, seven tackles for loss and three forced fumbles last season. Wide receiver Keenan Allen called James the heart of Los Angeles' defense, which is an accurate description for the 25-year-old star.

The Chargers need to agree to a new deal for James. Having him, Joey Bosa, J.C. Jackson and Khalil Mack should make the defense one of the better units in the NFL. They can't risk James sitting out to protect his body while they stall contract talks.

Especially because the AFC West is going to be insanely competitive this season, the Chargers will need all their players on the same page. Paying Derwin James appropriately will go a long way as they look to reach the postseason for the first time since 2018.