|BRING ME THE SKULL OF NORV TURNER
||[Dec. 31st, 2012|12:35 pm]
Originally posted to my Dreamwidth account as LJ is awaiting its fate as foretold by Mayan prophecy. You can comment there using your LJ login as an OpenID, or here. Either's good.
Of course, now I'm wondering what the over-under is on Norv getting picked up by the Bears. -sigh-
Actually, I wouldn't at all be surprised to see Norv in Chicago as offensive coordinator -- but I think his head coaching days are done. But God knows I don't have my fingers on the pulse of NFL ownership. I wouldn't have let Lovie Smith go -- sure, he may not know when to call a timeout or throw a challenge flag or how to start 7-1 and finish with a playoff berth, but I wouldn't put him in the bottom half of coaches in the league.
Change is sometimes necessary, but I don't see punting Smith as anything better than a lateral move.
I prolly would've stuck by Smith for another season or two to give the GM time to ditch more of Jerry Angelo's "prize picks"--esp. on the offense--and recruit some players who can remember which side of the line of scrimmage they're supposed to end up on.
Playoffs or not, 10-6 is better than many Bears seasons have been, especially in a season where both MN and GB also fielded at least halfways-decent teams.
And that, it appears, would be that.
Personally, I'm happier to see AJ Smith out the door.
Most frighteningly of all, it appears Norv had the best overall winning percentage of any Chargers coach. Probably because he came into a team that was very good, and then made it into something very mediocre, and never had to deal with the true dog teams like Coryell or (poor fellow) Mike Riley had at times.
Of course, now everyone's speculating on how this will play into the Chargers moving to Los Angeles. So damned tired of hearing that song. If you're gonna go, just fricking go already. I'm tired of hearing about it.
In this context, Norv Turner is the Mouth of Sauron and AJ Smith is the Unblinking Eye itself. Norv's just a symptom, but in the same way that "not breathing" is a symptom. Funny thing is all I'm hearing is about how liked Norv was, how well he got along with everyone, and AJ Smith is the human incarnation of burning bridges with napalm. Funny thing is, you're right, these guys are mediocre at best (and worst), far from the Riley/Jones eras. But they could've built on the Schottenheimer era, and that's going to be a tantalizing what-if scenario for pigskin historians for years. Way to gutpunch a franchise there, Smith. You could fill a roster with alienated ex-Bolts and give the current squad a run for its money. Hell, give Darren Sproles a kicker and I'd give 'em even odds.
Is Spanos still playing the LA card? God, that's infuriating. It's gone from "virtual impossibility" to "impending" to "fait accompli" and right back down the spectrum more times than I can count. But ditto with Jacksonville and the Vikings. You'd hope the moving tributes to the late Art Modell (at least those that didn't involve effigies) would teach him something about the collective memory and passion of a fanbase. I'm with you -- if they're gonna go, then just go, so I can bury them and walk away forever.
It's not Spanos playing the LA card, as such, but the newly elected mayor of San Diego is making noises that he'll play hardball, so everything's all aflutter.
I'll say this about Mike Riley -- he may have coached one of the worst teams that ever suited up at the professional level, but he took his lumps like a boss. The local sports radio had a show-with-the-coach every week, where fans got to call in and... erm... make their voices heard. As bad as that season got (and it got BAD), he never skipped out on coming on the show and letting them have their say. (And then he went back to the college ranks and started doing awesome again, so good for him.)
Everyone loved Norv, and everyone loved playing for Norv, if you can believe what you're hearing. Then again, it may be the natural tendency for people to lionize the recently departed, who knows?
Now I need to go watch the collapse of Mount Doom and imagine AJ as the Unblinking Eye. Well spoken.
Anyway, six weeks until Spring Training.