Well, well, well. For the second year, here we sit debating the Chargers merits or lack there of. For the second year, we balance precariously on the precipice of the future of this team and staff. For the second year it appears as if we've finally rid ourselves of the albatross, the elephant in the room, the 800 pound gorilla. For the second year, Kevin Acee says it so. Rejoice! Rejoice! Huzzah! We're free!
Enter Dean, the boss, the owner's owner. Hold your horses he says. Not so fast he says. He's made no decisions about the future of the Chargers, the Norv Turner era, or the Godfather's seemingly endless reign. NO. You are not set free. Speculate all you will, but the elephant in the room and the 800 pound gorilla just sat down at the poker table and they've just anted up, the albatross tending bar. Get comfortable. It's going to be a long night.
Enter Kevin Acee. He swears the new era begins now. Forgive me for a moment Kevin. Didn't you say just this same thing last year? Didn't you? Quote, December 31, 2011
"Norv Turner, the man whose winning percentage is tied as the highest among the 14 head coaches the Chargers have ever employed, is all but certain to be fired next week."
Hmmm. Forgive me for pointing out the obvious, but you got our hopes and dreams all atwitter last season's end. You virtually guaranteed that we would be freed of all things Norv last season. And now the sour grapes because you are sourcing an unnamed source within the organization that is feeding you the same info you were clearly misled by last season, nearly exactly one calendar year ago. Forgive me if your column does not incite the amount of optimism you would like amongst us "angry villagers" (Thanks Nick! You're the best!). Perusing your archives is an exercise in inconsistency. In June you wrote, "A.J. Not Going Anywhere Even With Playoff Miss." In September, you wrote that left tackle is unimportant to the Chargers. And then there's THIS. This. To paraphrase, A.J. gave Norv the players. The free agents are can't miss. How about a direct quote?
"I'm writing this now because I believe general manager A.J. Smith has in last month’s free agency spree and this weekend’s draft, finally done his part and at least rebuilt the engine on the Ferrari."
Do you hear that? The engine on the Ferrari has been rebuilt. Sigh. That Ferrari must have been rebuilt in that one mechanic's shop in Chula that uses cut rate parts scavenged from stolen vehicles just the other side of the border. The Ferrari started up, drove out of the garage, and the wheels came off, drifted down the street and the engine exploded in a fiery ball of suck.
So forgive me Mr. Acee if I'm not sold on your claim that things are going to change yet again. Especially when the owner of the team discounts your statements and dismisses them wholeheartedly. Mind you, I'm really excited about the prospect of this event finally occurring. Unlike Nick Canepa, I'm not afraid of moving forward and distancing ourselves from this era. The fear of moving forward is no reason to stick with a status quo that has clearly demonstrated time and time again that it will not be successful, but it has done so demonstrably year after year and the team has been trending downward since the Norv era began. You can make the claims of playoff appearances and division wins, and the overall record of the team during Norv's tenure, but you'd be manipulating the statistics to suit your argument. This era has been nothing short of disaster. How about some numbers? 2012. 4-8. 35-24. 4th & 29. Those are some telling numbers.
So, as we meander on down the 2012 death march, we can only hope that Acee is right this year. I think he'll be partially proven correct. In no way can I see the Norv era continuing. I could see it if attendance wasn't suffering so badly. Even Dean understands that he needs to reconcile things with the fans. So, exit Norv. But, I'm still not willing to concede that A.J. goes. Why have someone else groom the son of the owner for that eventual rise to the head of football operations position currently occupied by the Godfather? Why not let the Godfather play out his contract and groom his successor? I just don't see him going. Not yet. I truly hope I'm wrong. But alas, we here at this blog have been correct more than incorrect as of late. Blah.
So. we slog on. Pittsburgh today. 0-13 regular season record there. Ben back at the helm. Our awful offensive line further decimated by injury. Things are not looking up.
Pittsburgh 24. Chargers 6.