Despite fielding the league's second-ranked offense and top-ranked "D", the Chargers will miss the playoffs this season. That won't lead to a major shakeup on the sidelines or front office, however, as team president Dean Spanos told the San Diego Union-Tribune that both GM A.J. Smith and head coach Norv Turner will return next season.
San Diego had won four consecutive AFC West titles, but that streak officially came to a close on Sunday when the team was eliminated with a 34-20 loss to the Bengals. A combination of poor special-teams play, injuries and the holdouts of two key offensive players led to the disappointing season.
"The easiest thing in the world is to start over. Who the hell do I go hire? Blow the whole thing up? We're a pretty good team but we have to make the right moves," Spanos told the Unino-Tribune. "We've fallen. It could have been our draft picks or our free-agent moves. But we have a good core, and I don't care what anybody says, I'm not afraid to make changes. If I thought it was warranted, I would do it. We have a good foundation here."
The way we see it
The announcement is not a huge surprise, as Spanos and the Chargers seem to love Turner. He's a quarterback specialist and the coach has helped Philip Rivers emerge as one of the league's top signalcallers. But if the team misses the playoffs again in 2011, expect both Turner and Smith to be looking for work.