Around halfway through the season is when rumors start circulating about which NFL coaches might need to start looking for new jobs. There's a few names that make constant appearances on this list. Andy Reid. Any coach of the Cleveland Browns.
And Norv Turner.
See, Norval Eugene Turner has this uncanny ability to take teams that look good on paper crash and burn year after year. I don't know what it is.
Perhaps it's his inability to manage time. Only that aforementioned Reid can go toe-to-toe with Turner in managing the clock in such an inefficient manner.
Perhaps it's the dissension between himself and his players. The Chargers gave the the New Orleans Saints their only win of the season after Norv elected to have Nick Novak attempt a 55-yarder last week nearing the end of regulation.
The kick was missed, the Saints scored on the short field, loss for the San Diego Super Chargers. The decision to go for the field goal rather than punt allegedly resulted in Chargers QB Phillip Rivers to start yelling at Turner as the Saints went marching in for a victory.
Perhaps it's his lack of actual coaching skills. Warren Sapp went on record four years ago saying that when both were members of the Oakland Raiders, Turner didn't practice the two-minute drill. For two years. The quintessential offense for all teams, and Norv didn't think it would ever come in handy. Maybe that's why he went 9-23 in two years in Oaktown.
Monday's loss to the Denver Broncos was highlighted by San Diego blowing a 24-point halftime lead. And no, I'm not blaming the meltdown entirely on Turner; Phillip "Struggle Face" Rivers didn't help by throwing four interceptions and losing two fumbles. But Rivers has shown he has the appropriate skills to do his job, which is more than Norval can say.
Even Chargers owner Dean Spanos had difficulty explaining why he decided to keep Turner around earlier this year:
"A lot of the fans never gave him a chance when he came here. I think it's unfair. When you look at his record ... albeit, we've fallen off and we're in the middle right now and it's not where we want to be, but we are not the dregs of the league. And believe me, we were there. I've seen it. I don't ever want to go there again. But I think he's been treated unfairly. Until we all win, it's probably never going to change."
Yes, look at his record, says Spanos. Except don't look too closely. We don't like that part. Sure, he's 52-33 as Chargers head coach. But the team hasn't made the playoffs since 2009 when they were upset by the New York Jets. He's also boasting a 110-115-1 lifetime coaching record. So there's that.
Last season, I said there was absolutely no way Norv was returning to San Diego for the 2012 season. Somehow, he stuck around. It's only Week 7, but I'm going on record again to say this is the last season Norv is in San Diego. No, scratch that. It's the last season Turner is on an NFL sideline. No team in their right mind would let this man coach their team after examining his resume.
Spanos said nothing's going to change Norv's treatment in "America's Finest City" until the Bolts start winning. The only problem? Winning is never going to happen with Turner at the helm. Give him the boot, and start anew. Preferably with a coach that can get to the playoffs.
Oh, and win once they get there too. Sorry Marty Schottenheimer.
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