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Report: Chargers won’t use franchise tag on TE Hunter Henry

The Chargers informed Hunter Henry Tuesday that they will not exercise the franchise tag, meaning he is heading into free agency in 2021.

Tight end Hunter Henry #86 of the Los Angeles Chargers stands on the sideline in the second half of their game against the Las Vegas Raiders at Allegiant Stadium on December 17, 2020 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Photo by Chris Unger/Getty Images

The Los Angeles Chargers have decided they will not use their tag on tight end Hunter Henry, according to Adam Schefter. This means that he will officially hit free agency in the 2021 season and is able to begin speaking with teams at the beginning of the legal tampering period, which starts Monday, March 15.

Henry was the 35th overall pick in the 2016 NFL Draft and played under the team’s franchise tag in the 2020 season. Despite being with the team for five seasons, Henry was forced to sit out the 2018 season after suffering a torn ACL during OTAs. Despite his missed season, Henry has racked up the 15th most targets, 13th most receiving yards and is tied for the eighth-most touchdowns among tight ends since drafted in 2016 — impressive considering he’s missed just over 31% of games since drafted due to injury.

In that same span, Henry also ranks top-12 in fantasy points produced per touch among tight ends. If he’s headed to a team that’s needy for receiving weapons, he may be a fantasy football bargain, finishing 2020 as the TE15 in half-PPR formats.

Henry’s departure will also, of course, have ramifications for the Los Angeles Chargers. He accounted for 15 percent of the team’s targets in the 2020 season, leaving 93 targets up for grabs.