The offense for the Chargers in '08 was clearly not the problem, and with all key starters returning, they look to do a lot of scoring in '09. While traditionally the Chargers have been a run first team, I think we can expect to see Phillip Rivers throw the ball a little more this season.
Ladainian Tomlinson has been the key to the Chargers success in the past, but this season should see more of the offense revolving around Rivers. With the emergence of Darren Sproles and a talented receiving core, Rivers should have a Pro Bowl season in '09.
Chris Chambers, Vincent Jackson, and Antonio Gates need to have a good season for this offense to succeed. Rivers is still a young quarterback, but as his experience grows, so should his playbook.
All the pieces are in place for this offense to explode every play. Norv Turner is known for being a great offensive coach, and with these kind of weapons, it should be a lot easier.
The 2008 Chargers were very weak in pass defense. It is no question that the loss of Shawne Merriman and Stephen Cooper hurt the defense, and having Antonio Cromartie playing part of the year with a fractured hip didn't help, either.
The only notable loss to free agency was Igor Olshansky, heading to Dallas.
The '09 Chargers will probably not make many changes to the defensive playbook. Last year, they struggled to get off the field on third down and gave quarterbacks all day to throw. The defensive problems the Chargers faced last year were more thought to be personnel issues, and not so much scheme-related.
This might be the do-or-die season for Norv Turner and his coaching staff. While the playbook should not receive drastic changes, slight adjustments will always be made. If the Chargers experience the same defensive woes in '09, we should see the end of the Norv Turner era in San Diego.
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