Blog Entry

No shocker that Turner, A.J. back

Posted on: January 3, 2012 2:49 pm
Edited on: January 3, 2012 5:08 pm
Dean Spanos' decision to retain Norv Turner and A.J. Smith wasn't exactly a surprise. There were rumblings following last weekend's defeat of Oakland that Spanos was considering retaining them, with one source on Monday telling me he thought both would be back.

And that's precisely what happened.

Turner had two more years left on a contract that pays him $3 million per, and Smith has three more years left on a deal that pays him $2 million annually. But money was not the consideration here, I was told. Spanos is simply resistant to change, reluctant to make a sweeping overhaul unless he feels he must, and with the Chargers winning four of their last five he believed Turner deserved another chance.

It couldn't have hurt, either, that star quarterback Philip Rivers spoke out in favor of retaining his coach after the Chargers finished the season. Rivers is not only the club's best player; he's the spokesman for the team. And when he defended Turner, he had to make an impression with Spanos.

This doesn't mean that Turner is in the clear. On the contrary, the club missed the playoffs the last two years, and that's a problem. Spanos won't tolerate another 8-8 season, so Turner has been put on alert. My guess is that he either wins the AFC West next season or it's on to another coach.

But at least he has the chance.

A week ago, I never thought that was possible. But Spanos' move is made in the name of continuity, something the Chargers lacked over the years, and he must figure that if it can work for others maybe, just maybe, it can work for him. If you believe in your head coach -- and Spanos is fond of Turner -- then you give him every opportunity to prove you right.

Spanos just gave Turner his last chance.


Since: Dec 15, 2007
Posted on: January 3, 2012 3:25 pm

No shocker that Turner, A.J. back

The message that the Chargers just gave their fans is that mediocrity will be accepted year in and year out.  This is probably the worst decision that Spanos could have made for this team and for his push to get a new stadium built with taxpayer dollars.   This is also the worst thing you could have told your fan base:

Spanos:  I want you to pay $100 for a seat in a stadium paid for already by your tax dollars to watch a middle of the road team win as many as they lose.

I don't think that anything is gained by this move.  At least Turner needs to go.  At EVERY stop, he has taken good talent and made sure it peformed below expectations every year, at every stop.  Go 14-2 in the regular season and lose in your first playoff game.  Have the top O and top D in the same year (2010) and go 8-8.  Get rid of your best talent and don't replace it.  Coach ultraconservatively to make sure you don't get blamed.  Don't hold your players accountable.

What a sad organization.  I guess their fans just got the finger for their years of loyalty, suffering through 10 years of pain for every playoff success.  Please, SD, DON'T PAY FOR ANOTHER STADIUM FOR THESE LOSERS!     

Since: Jan 3, 2012
Posted on: January 3, 2012 3:20 pm

No shocker that Turner, A.J. back


I start getting my paper bags ready for next years season.  I can't believe that they didnt fire AJ Smith at least!  This just confirms that the Spanos Family was more worried about the 5 million then their fans.

Since: Jan 8, 2009
Posted on: January 3, 2012 3:16 pm

No shocker that Turner, A.J. back

I know long want to be a charges fan! Please stay in San Diego …

Since: Oct 18, 2007
Posted on: January 3, 2012 3:11 pm

No shocker that Turner, A.J. back

Good. I enjoy watching the Chargers choke year in and year out.

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