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When you have the #1 offense and #1 defense in the NFL and are 2-4, your problem is coaching, not talent.
Look who they've played. Those are some of the worst and least talented offenses in the NFL. The best offensive team they've seen is the Jaguars. That #1 defense is about as misleading as stats get. Jets, Ravens, Vikings, Steelers, Bears and Giants are much better. When your facing QBs like David Gerrard, Sam Bradford, Max Hall, Matt Hasselbeck, Matt Cassel and Jason Campbell... your defense is going to look much better than they actually are. It just goes to show how disappointing the Chargers have been this year with such an easy schedule.
They should be undefeated or a 1 loss team... at worst. The main problem is special teams. Then they're losing the TO margin, they're getting behind early, they're not running the ball with any consistency, the WR play is just as inconsistent, the offensive line play is inconsistent, the defense doesn't make any plays against terrible QBs... and their special teams is mentally handicapped. They need to fire whoever it is that runs the special teams unit.
Their defense will end up in the 15 to 20 range like usual. Their offense is one dimensional, unless they face a team that can't stop the run, then they look the #1 offense in the NFL. They have one of the best offenses in the NFL, a middle of the road defense and the worst special teams play in the NFL... by far. What does that make for? A 2-4 team that has had very close loses.
This is much more than just Norv Turner's fault.
And did I mention, they have the most pathetic special teams play in recent history?
Turner deserves blame, but all of it? No, this TEAM is not as good as everyone thought. Losing Vincent Jackson does hurt them. You take one of the best WRs away from your team and the consistency and impact of your offense is going to be felt. That goal line stand the Chief had might have been for not if they had Vincent Jackson, or maybe Gates wouldn't have seen 3 defenders jam him at the LOS.
Back to the topic... no, I don't feel bad for him. Why? I just don't. He's not the greatest coach in the world and he has a past of making conservative, stupid decisions on a routine basis, so I usually don't defend him.
Originally posted by Scott Wright
I honestly believe Reggie Bush has turned into exactly the type of player I envisioned.
Originally posted by PossibleCabbage
I would like it if there were more successful black Quarterbacks in the NFL...
Originally posted by bearsfan_51
iamcandian lives in a cabin in the Yukon Territory and writes letters to railroad barons about the price of hard tack.
Originally posted by GatorsBullsFan
I could possibly see Matthew Stafford Dropping out of the 1st round
Originally posted by GoRavens
Tahj Boyd has the best fundamentals of any QB in this class, I think his game translates great to the NFL.
He's had two coaching stints prior to this one that can be described, at best, as purely mediocre (his Washington job actually pretty disastrous). He came in with a spotty head coaching resume to a team that was crazy talented and hasn't done much above and beyond winning regular season games. And I don't buy for a second Charger fans crying foul about talent. As YFS said, the team is gaining the most yardage and surrendering the least in the entire NFL right now (by quite a large margin, I might add). The team isn't lacking some pivotal piece, they're lacking execution.
A lack of execution gets laid at the feet of a head coach. That's just how it goes.
Losing Osgood really hurt, but that alone shouldn't cause a disaster. Changes in personnel on special teams can really hurt, even if the guy is just okay as chemistry between the players is important. If in coverage as the returner turns a different direction if player A expects B to go to a certain angle but B expects A to go to that one it can blow up a huge hole.
That would be done on the chalk board, but the doing it on that is totally different then with real action. With limited special team practices having a season together great improves for next.
Their are things a coach can do besides just telling players what they should do. He can send some very athletic starters who aren't stars on it. It would take time away from regular preparation and increase injury risk but if it can stop terrible mistakes it is worth. In the preseason they would have seen some guys miss assignment and if it didn't get fixed Turner should have taken him out.
I don't know if this would work, doing kickoff coverage without tackling and hits. The drill isn't about tackling the returner or hits, it is just about getting assignments right as the returner runs around.
Turner should have seen this problem coming in the preseason. I really doubt the special teams were awesome in the preseason and became horrid in the regular one.
A.J Smith has made quite a few questionable moves if you ask me. He believes that the Chargers can just move on from any player (i.e Merriman, Jackson, Williams, Cromartie)
Same arguement can be made for Wade Phillips, Jerry Jones need to take the backseat and let proven and trusted GM run the Cowboys.
As a guy who follows the team, I disagree with these statements. We would miss Merriman if he could ever get healthy. It's a shame that it ended the way it did, but we couldn't wait for him anymore. In fact, roster changes are more Norv's forte than AJ's during the season. We would miss Williams in 2006, but not this year since Garay has done a good job at the NT position. That and the fact that Williams hasn't really been the same since 2006. We also drafted William's replacement in Cam Thomas. Cromartie just didn't fit our defensive scheme. He was too much of a coward when it came to actually having to tackle anyone, especially a running back. Cason had been doing fine until last week against the Rams.
As for Jackson, let's just say we'll miss Gates more than anything else. Rivers has that uncanny ability to make wide receivers on our team look really good. But, oh boy will I miss Gates this weekend against the Patriots.
I was saying that mostly about LT, VJax, Merriman and McNeill. Who have all had problems with AJ not Turner.
Those two don't have problems necessarily with the GM just like Revis didn't have a problem with the Jets FO. They just wanted to be paid. McNeill loves AJ now. VJ not so much. Joys of having two DUIs and getting arrested before a playoff game, which led to your QB having to drive you to the game, which led to you deciding to kick the penalty flag for some reason.
LT was unhappy that AJ didn't resign Brees and fired Marty. But more than that he just wasn't happy there anymore. It's why he took less money to play with the Jets.
As for Merriman, it's a bad situation with those two. I think the turning point was when Merriman decided not to get surgery immediately after the AFC Championship game, which led to him being placed on IR after the first game of the 2008 season. AJ was the one who told him to do it, and he didn't listen. It's why he's still injured after all this time. That and the whole off the field issues like the Tila Tequila situation probably did him in with AJ.
One of the reasons for the creation of it is hiring Norv in the first place
You're absolutely right about this.
The Norv hiring was 100% about ego. AJ wanted to prove that he could win a Superbowl with a mediocre-at-best headcoach to prove how awesome a talent evaluator he was.
He did get stuck between a rock and hard place with that coaching search, though. Once Cam Cameron and Wade Phillips left, the coaching staff was comprised of only Marty, who did very little coaching at that point in his career. It was too late to get any real, viable head coach prospects.
I don't think either is totally to blame, the Chargers keep playing well despite all the losses. They are 2-4 but haven't we seen this every year?
Bottom line is that its very hard to win a Super Bowl, especially in the AFC competing with 3 of the best run franchises in sports right now (Colts, Steelers, Pats) and they haven't always had all their pieces at full speed in playoff time. You always have to have a balance of good young players and veterans because you can't pay everyone in their prime for prime money. The reason the chargers were loaded for a bit there was because of how well Smith drafted.