Friday, October 19, 2012

This is Your Chargers, San Diego

Here's a column from Chargers Director of Public Relations Bill Johnston entitled Take a Chill Pill and it's directed at all of those who would take umbrage with the pitiful performance of the Chargers this season. This is how the Chargers' brass deals with criticism. And it's all you really need to know about the people that run this franchise.

Hey Bill, you may be right about a couple of seasons where the team rose from the ashes to make it to their demise in the post-season, but it's been a few years since we've legitimately come back from anything. Last time I checked, throwing the past in the faces of would-be detractors was a move typically employed by the Raider Nation. But you did it, so let's go ahead and shine a light on some of your recollections.

1) The 1994 team that started 0-4. I have no doubt that there were people that thought that team was destined for a horrible season and a vacant coaching position by the end of that year. I was probably one of them. That's what happens when you start 0-4. The vast majority of teams that start 0-4 do not do much with the rest of their season. That criticism is wholly justified. No one-not you or anyone else in the organization-could of realistically predicted that turnaround. Most importantly, that team has nothing to do with this team. A recurring theme over the next couple of points.

2) 2004 team wins 9 of their last 10 to finish 12-4. Again, kind of an out of the blue turnaround. The rise of Gates, I'd call it. And a sign of things to come. Most importantly, not today's team. Not even close.

3) 2006 teams wins last 10 to go 14-2. It is offensive to compare today's team with that team. That team filled us all with hope for a wonderful Chargers "window." The only thing that team had in common with current teams is its unfortunately knack for losing playoff games.

4) 2007 team that started 1-3 and ended up 11-5 and going all the way into the AFC Championship game. Ah yes, the first team of the Norv era. Where Norv basked in the glory provided by the residual effects of the prior coaching staff for the first time, only to produce diminishing returns each and every year since.

5) The 2008 team that won it's last four games to win the division. You sure you want to use this one? What was our record that year? No one gets to brag about winning their division in an 8-8 year. Maaaybe if you actually win the Superbowl. Maaaaybe. But we didn't.

6) The 2009 team that won it's last 11 games to go 13-3. This is the team I like to refer to as the exception that proves the rule. A team doing this well in the regular season this far into Norv's tenure is so remarkable that it must be an anomaly. And how'd we do in the post that year? Loss to the 9-7 Jets? Good team.

Bill, you left out the last two years, but I think you should throw them in there, because both teams played really well in the final stages of the season. Well enough to save the coach, the GM and-Hell Bill-even you! With all of this history laid out before me I have no reason to doubt that this year's team won't truly disappoint us until the very end of the regular season or the beginning of the post, and that is apparently something to embrace. Your snarky column has provided me the perspective that I, the uneducated fan, needed to appreciate what's really going on here. I don't even feel compelled to remind you that the fans pay you money to watch your product. that the money the fans provide, which magically turns into the zeros on your paycheck gives them an actual right to be displeased when the organization jams its head up its ass and puts a disgraceful product on the field. And I have no reason to remind you that part of the territory that comes with your job and all those zeroes on your paycheck is putting up with criticism like a man. Be a man, Bill.


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