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Published on 01/03/2012 at Tue Jan 03 13:29.
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San Diego Chargers head coach Norv Turner gestures for a face mask against the Baltimore Ravens at Qualcomm Stadium on December 18, 2011 in San Diego, California. The Chargers defeated the Ravens 34-14.  (Jeff Gross/Getty Images)

San Diego Chargers head coach Norv Turner gestures for a face mask. (Jeff Gross/Getty Images)

“Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” – Albert Einstein

Sssshhhhhh…. don’t share that with Dean Spanos.

The San Diego Chargers president has elected to keep head coach Norv Turner and general manager A.J. Smith, the Associated Press reports, despite another underwhelming season and a roster increasingly eroding of talent.

The Chargers finished 8-8 in 2011 but boasted two 4-1 streaks: one at the beginning of the season and one at the end. They lost six straight in between. Clearly that 4-1 finish — combined with knocking the Oakland Raiders out of the playoffs in the season finale — was enough for Spanos to spare his men in charge.

But should it have been? Spanos has a five-year sample from which to draw expectations on his duo, and it’s been more disappointing than promising:

  • The Chargers missed the playoffs in both 2011 and 2010.
  • In 2008, they made the playoffs with an 8-8 record.
  • Their other two years boasted impressive records, but they failed to capitalize on the talent that was once there.
  • They still might have the most talented roster in the division, and definitely the most talented quarterback, but fall short of expectations year in, year out.

And while it’s true that there is something to be said for patience in the National Football League (see Smith, Alex), we don’t see that applying to our rivals out west. Even the 49ers had to fire a few coaches to get where they are.

Dean Spanos is simply delaying the inevitable. Another season of Norv and A.J. sounds like another AFC West championship to this Broncos fan. And I’m discount-doublechecking over the news.

  • Anonymous

    From a Bronco fan living in the land of the statics, I have only one thing to say about this move on their part… YES!

  • areferee

    To use an old Corps expression from MCRD there in San Diego, the Chargers are “marking time”, while the Broncos are “on the grinder” and marching “double-time”.  OOH RAH!

  • Jon

    Exciting news, indeed!

    But Kyle, I really think Alex Smith is the only thing holding the 49ers back. They have the defense, they just don’t have any offense. And in my opinion, that’s because they need a better quarterback.

  • Anonymous

    While Smith has had several years now to progress keep in mind 2 things.

    1. This is his first year in THIS system

    2. The 49ers have scored 380 points which is 12th most in the league and just a few points away from being a top 8 offense.

  • Anonymous

    In fact they outscored every team in the AFC except for the Pats, Chargers and Texans (by 1 lousy point)

  • Monty

    Good point. I actually have no idea if Smith is doing well, I just assumed it based on their record.

    You’d think, being the biggest pusher of “Quarterbacks win/loss record don’t matter” I know, I wouldn’t fall for that trap. Nobody’s perfect :)

  • Monty

    [looks up stats] 19 touchdowns to 5 INT’s aint too shabby.

  • Anonymous

    Dean Spanos becoming Al Davis?

  • Jon

    Not too shabby at all.  But of the few games I’ve watched this season of the 49ers, their offense seems non-existent.  They have a running game, now they just need a passing game.  Maybe I just watched the few games he had off days, I don’t know.

  • Jon

    What % of those points did the offensive, and more particularly, Smith score?  Maybe I’m wrong about him but I’m not sold yet that he’s all people are now making him out to be.

  • anthony33

    Bummer… would have like to have landed Turner as our OC for next year.  

  • Anonymous

    He isn’t the next coming of Joe Montana but he has done it when asked to. When Frank Gore was hurt, he performed. He doesn’t have a great group of WR’s except that freak of nature TE.

    He’s played well in the clutch too and the few times the game has turned into a shootout, he has kept his team in it. 

    People are just super excited the 49ers are back in the show after a REALLY long and ugly layoff. Talk about marque franchises struggling, wow.

    So it’s natural he is getting over hyped by some. Especially considering the way the last few coaches and even the fans were treating him.

    Still, he has been very solid to say the least.

  • Anonymous