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Former Packers center Corey Linsley expected to sign 5-year deal with Chargers

Linsley will be the NFL’s highest-paid center and gets to reunite with former teammate Bryan Bulaga.

NFL: NFC Championship-Green Bay Packers at San Francisco 49ers Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

When Aaron Jones signed his new contract on Sunday, it was all but assured that Corey Linsley was about to become a former Green Bay Packer. On Monday, about four hours after the start of the NFL’s negotiation period, Linsley has reportedly found his new home.

Tom Pelissero of NFL Network first reported the news that Linsley has agreed to a contract with the Los Angeles Chargers. Mike Garafolo reports that the deal is worth $62.5 million over five years, making Linsley the highest-paid center in the NFL; that title currently belongs to Ryan Kelly of the Indianapolis Colts, whose contract pays him an average of $12.4 million per year.

In 2020, Linsley’s seventh NFL season, he earned recognition on the All-Pro team, being named as the first team center. He played in 13 games last season, missing just three during the second half of the season with an MCL sprain but returning for the final two regular season contests and the postseason.

Originally a fifth-round draft pick in 2014 out of Ohio State, Linsley played in 99 games over his seven years with the Packers, starting each of those games. He was thrust into the lineup as a rookie following an injury to projected starter JC Tretter late in the preseason, then proved to be a solid anchor in the middle of the Packers’ line. Tretter left for Cleveland after the 2016 season, while Linsley earned a three-year contract extension just before the expiration of his rookie contract at the end of the 2017 season. Although Linsley has had some nagging injuries over the years and will turn 30 years old in July, he has missed only three games in the past four seasons — the three he spent on injured reserve in 2020.

Linsley now rejoins former Packers tackle Bryan Bulaga with the Chargers after Bulaga signed with Los Angeles during the 2020 free agent cycle.