Sunday, May 12, 2013

Spanos Sets Chargers Up Well for the Future

To say that the Chargers have been a disappointment as of late would be an understatement to say the least. This is a team that was contending for the right to represent the AFC in the Superbowl just a few short years ago. After three terrible season by fan and team standards in a row, a change was needed. GM A.J. Smith, once regarded as one of the best in the business, was fired. Joining him on the curb was offensive genius Norv Turner, who has never truly had success as a head coach. The Chargers brought in young blood with Tom Telesco and Mike McCoy. The decision to bring them in, especially McCoy, was a fundamentally sound move by the Chargers. Both are young guys with a lot to prove in this league. McCoy has never been a head coach at the NFL level and steps in at a crucial time for the Chargers.

Telesco may have been an even more critical hire for the Chargers. A.J. Smith ran several successful drafts, netting star players for several seasons. As of late though, he had succeeded only in railroading the team. He was too aggressive in his trade philosophy and to set in his ways. Telesco is all business. That stood out no better than his decision to trade up in the second round to grab Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o. Telesco inherited a team that has almost no offensive line, poor depth at running back and receiver  and no true leader on defense. We won't even mention that the clock is ticking for many of the players on the roster. Guys like Rivers and Weddle are certainly not getting any younger. Telesco has the difficult task of bringing in talent for McCoy's system for the long haul while still producing a winning team right away. The fans won't stand for another season watching the playoffs from the outside looking in. 

What perhaps nobody really wants to think about with these hires is this. Each is a newcomer. This means that they have no record to evaluate on when it comes to their current job. The team can afford to trust these two for the following reasons. First, the talent window for the Chargers began shutting years ago. This is a team that is maybe a year or two away from having some serious rebuilding pains if things don't go right. Knowing this, why not put two guys with everything to prove in the situation. In a few years, we will certainly know if these two can perform their jobs well. If they are successful, then the team will be successful and competing for Super Bowls again. If not, it will just make it that much easier to start completely over. Charger fans should be looking forward to the coming season. By all looks, these two should be great. Perhaps the best thing Spanos has done is hire these two. Time will tell. Look for some growing pains, but I for one expect at least 8 wins out of the team and a wildcard spot in the playoffs. Year one is all about getting things right. 

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