Chargers safety Derwin James holding in at training camp until new deal is reached

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Derwin James is in Costa Mesa, California, with the rest of his Los Angeles Chargers teammates, but he’s yet to take the practice field.

Bolts head coach Brandon Staley said Wednesday that James is not practicing due to his contract situation, but said the team’s two-time Pro Bowl safety would be practicing fully once a new deal was done.

James underwent shoulder surgery during the offseason, but Staley underscored that the defensive back was 100 percent and would be a full-go once the sides agreed upon a contract extension. The anchor of the backend of the Bolts’ defense, James is entering the final year of his rookie contract, which currently has him on the books for $9.05 million in base salary.

James, 25, was selected 17th overall by the Chargers in the 2018 NFL Draft. Pittsburgh Steelers safety Minkah Fitzpatrick, also 25, was picked six spots ahead of James in the 2018 draft by the Miami Dolphins, and recently signed an extension to become the highest-paid safety in the league at an average of $18.4 million per season.

James burst upon the NFL scene with an All-Pro and Pro Bowl rookie campaign. However, his career was idled by injuries when he was limited to just five total games over the 2019-2020 seasons.

He came back last year to turn in a career-high 118 tackles along with three forced fumbles, two interceptions and a pair of sacks to garner his second career Pro Bowl nod.

Though he is taking part in walk-throughs per Staley, James is a hold-in as the wait continues for the safety and the Chargers to reach an agreement.

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