Blog Entry

Report: Norv Turner's days could be numbered

Posted on: November 22, 2011 12:30 pm
Turner could be looking for work come January. (AP/US PRESSWIRE)

Posted by Ryan Wilson

Norv Turner is in his fifth season as the Chargers head coach. He took over the team in 2007 after general manager A.J. Smith fired Marty Schottenheimer for going 14-2. In three of the four seasons since, two things have been constant: the Chargers have gotten off to glacially slow starts only to mount a late-season run and make the playoffs. And San Diego, despite a franchise quarterback and plenty of playmakers, is still looking for its first Super Bowl.
Turner's record in San Diego
2007: Started 1-3, finished 10-2, lost to the Pats in the AFC Championship game
2008: Started 3-5, finished 5-3, lost to the Steelers in the AFC Divisional game
2009: Started 2-3, finished 11-0, lost to the Jets in the AFC Divisional game
2010: Started 2-5, finished 9-7, missed the playoffs 
But 2011 was different; the Chargers started 4-1, were the clear favorites in the AFC West (and even some folks' Super Bowl favorites), and everything was finally coming together. Unfortunately, the new collective bargaining agreement didn't shorten the regular season to five games. San Diego has dropped five straight and is a complete mess of a franchise. Philip Rivers has looked, well, awful, the run defense is non-existent, and head coach Norv Turner, through it all, remained expressionless.

But barring a Tebow-like miracle, Norv won't have to worry about the Chargers much longer. The San Diego Union-Tribune's Kevin Acee writes that Turner's days could be numbered.
At this point, it is apparent only a drastic turnaround will save Turner, as the Chargers have lost five straight and are in last place in the AFC West, in grave danger of missing the playoffs for a second straight season. [Owner Dean] Spanos also has wondered about repeated game management decisions, and after five years it is possible Turner has been given enough time to get done what no Chargers coach ever has – win a Super Bowl.
Ah, yes, those game-management decisions. The latest came Sunday, in the Chargers' loss to the Bears. San Diego lost its final two timeouts with 3:16 to play and trailing by 11. They burned the first one, and then during thee timeout decided to challenge a ruling. The Chargers lost the challenge (of course they did) and another timeout. You don't see that every day.

But Turner isn't the only guy who should be worried about his job. Smith could be in trouble, too. Acee writes: "But even late last week, word had begun to circulate in league circles about Spanos' escalating concern about the state of his franchise in the hands of Turner -- who has the second-highest winning percentage in team history at .608 (45-29) -- and even Smith, the man Spanos has given virtually complete control of football operations over the past nine years."

In general, Smith has done a good job of roster-building and fielding a winning team. But the lack of success in the postseason coupled with Turner's weekly gaffes have started to add up.

Early last season, when Vincent Jackson was holding out for a new deal and Smith refused to budge, Jackson's agent Neil Schwartz said "We had multiple deals in place. It is our understanding … that the Chargers were unreasonable. More than one general manager referred to A.J. as the 'Lord of No Rings.'"

Short of an improbable turnaround, Norv and A.J. might soon be the Lord of No Jobs.

As we mentioned in Tuesday's Coach Killers, maybe Rex Ryan was onto something.

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Since: Jan 6, 2008
Posted on: November 22, 2011 2:02 pm

Report: Norv Turner's days could be numbered

Good job, Philip Rivers. You and your lack of talent have ruined a coach's career now. Hope some team actually realizes that Philip Rivers' lack of talent and mental mistakes are the cause for the Chargers' recent lack of success. Norv Turner is not the one throwing interceptions.

Since: May 30, 2011
Posted on: November 22, 2011 1:56 pm

Report: Norv Turner's days could be numbered

I hope so because not since Bobby Cox with the Atlanta Braves, have I seen a man do so little, with so much talent. Most every Head Coach in the league would have loved to have Turner's job. Live in a great part of the country, have an incredible talent pool on the field and many of those coaches would have delivered Smith & Spanos a ring! Smith took a huge gamble firing Schottenheimer at 14-2 but I didn't disagreed with him at the time. The moment he hired Turner, I was like, what happened to the GM with so much foresight? Why is he hiring a proven successful assistant coach, who is also a proven unsuccessful head coach. What is going to change in Norv Turner to make him better at something he is not good at? Well now we know it's nothing. AJ has to take the bullet here for pulling the trigger too fast with Schottenheimer and not fast enough with Turner. It proves the firing of Schottenheimer and the longer than necessary existence of Turner are all AJ's personal choices and not well thought out desicions for the betterment of the team. And for that, he must go.

Since: Oct 15, 2009
Posted on: November 22, 2011 1:48 pm

Report: Norv Turner's days could be numbered

you can't just blame norv...hell rivers has been in a daze the last 5 games...even v. jackson doesn't see to know what si going on all the time..

You have to win the game in the last few seconds and rivers throws the ball to v. jacksonand he has no clue that the ball is coming his way..
If you get rid of Norv, take Rivers and V. jackson with you.....

Why run to the end zone an not turn around to even try and fight for the ball..I have seen more football players laying down on the job almost like the decision came form the top to create issue over the CBA....    

Since: Oct 13, 2006
Posted on: November 22, 2011 1:47 pm

Report: Norv Turner's days could be numbered

Norv Turner has never been a good head coach and I don't care what his record says.  The Chargers have been in a bad division for the better part of a decade and haven't turned that into much outside of a playoff win here or there.  I personally thought Turner should have been fired years ago but AJ Smith is so damn stubborn that it seemed like he just wanted to prove a point.  Smith should probably be let go too.  He had done nothing to upgrade the defensive or offensive line in recent years and everyone knows that games are won in the trenches.  

Oh well, let them both go.  Maybe Rivers can play for a smart, tough coach who will give him a chance to succeed.   

Since: Feb 13, 2007
Posted on: November 22, 2011 1:47 pm

Report: Norv Turner's days could be numbered


The last thing you should want is John Gruden as a head coach, yes he won the Super Bowl, but he did it with the tools Tony Dungy left him. Every year since he run his RBs into the ground, made poor draft decisions and destroyed the Bucs as a competitive team, until he was fired. Norv as a head coach is awful. I said this day would happen the moment they hired him as the team Marty built is finally eroded down into just Antiono Gates and a few others. If he keeps his job the Chargers might win 4-6 games tops next year. Norv is a coordinator and good one at that, but he should never be given a head coach mantle ever again. Jeff Fisher is another underachiever as his only claim to fame was coach the Titans 1 year short of a Super Bowl victory. He is a better choice mind you, but Id look at getting Marty's son away from the Jets first.

Since: Dec 20, 2009
Posted on: November 22, 2011 1:45 pm

Report: Norv Turner's days could be numbered

they both need to be handed thier walking papers. AJ has gotten into to many pissing contests with present and former players. why do you franchise sproles and overpay him for 1 year and then let him go? why do you treat V-Jax like a run of the mill receiver? AJ, you dont think this affects his play and motivation? norv is just another in a long line of guys who can coach but cant be a succesful head coach.

Since: Oct 6, 2006
Posted on: November 22, 2011 1:44 pm

Report: Norv Turner's days could be numbered

Turner has got to go.  We need a coach that can motivate men.  And the Grudens, Cowhers, and any self respecting up and coming coordinator will not work for A.J.   We should have kept Shottenhimer and dumped A.J..  The Key talent that we had in 2006 was broought in by Butler not A.J.  A.J. gave us Cromartie (and his 10 kids), Roid Merriman, Ryan Fumble Mathews, a string of mediocre recievers besides VJax (headcase), a slew of mediocre D-Line and secondary players, no consistent pass rusher etc.  Phil Rivers and a weak AFC West masked our problems for a while but its time for the preverbial "blow up the team" moment.  The only guy we need to keep is Rivers.  

Since: Aug 1, 2009
Posted on: November 22, 2011 1:16 pm

Report: Norv Turner's days could be numbered

i myself would like to see A.J hit the door.

Since: Sep 21, 2011
Posted on: November 22, 2011 1:12 pm

Report: Norv Turner's days could be numbered

What was that noise? I think it was the window closing on this current San Diego Charger run for the last 7 years.(I know they missed the playoffs last year) They were one of the most talented teams on both sides of the ball to never get to one Super Bowl. Phillip Rivers is still an elite quaterback. One bad statisical year. Memo to A.J. Smith but coaching matters in the NFL it is a shame that Smith had put a lot of talent on this team but has got cheap on the coaching staff Schottenheimer and Turner. Rivers is 29 years old and the rebuilding process is going to start all over. Unbelievable. Fire AJ Smith

Since: Nov 22, 2008
Posted on: November 22, 2011 1:04 pm

Report: Norv Turner's days could be numbered

This team has made some poor (coaching and personnel) decisions in the last couple of years - and so what if Turner made the playoffs in the first 3 years?  They were in the ABSOLUTE WORST division the NFL - someone had to come out of that division.  Now that they other teams in the division are much improved than in previous seasons, Chargers don't even have a chance.  If they can't beat Denver this week, Turner should be fired on the spot.  Go Denver!!!  It's just a shame to see all that Talent in San Diego go to waste - I have never seen a team with as much talent as they have, do nothing.  I was glad when LT and Turner left - no chance for a Ring in San Diego - at least not while Norv is at the helm.


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