So not many of us were happy to receive the news that Norv Turner was retained, myself included. I, unlike some of you have been able to move on (what’s the point of complaining about something you have no control over).
Let’s start there with the HC, Norval Turner, did any of you know that he was back up to our HOF QB Dan Fouts while at Oregon? They remain good friends to this day. He also came to visit Fouts during training camp and picked the brain of Don Coryell. Yes, that is why his offenses look so familiar to us ‘Old Timers’. His offensive mind is great, but it’s the nuances of being a HC that concern all of us, time outs, 2 min drills ect. This is where Rich Bisaccia comes in. He is the new assistant HC. With the turn around the special teams made under him last season, I believe he will be a huge help to Norv. My expectations are that he calls the time outs, keeps in Norv’s ear about time management and helps light a fire under the players @$$. Norv needs to keep his mind on the offense and not be confused by other stuff.
Another concern I have with to coaching staff is Jeff Hurd, the strength and conditioning coach. I know it’s not just me that thinks our guys get hurt way to much, most of it has to do with conditioning. Yes we see them stretch during pre-game but, is that enough? In my mind we have had more problems with nagging injuries since 2007 when he was brought in. (I need to move on from this, I’m trying to publish something positive!!)
Our Oline coach is Hall Hunter. He has been in that position since 2006, his lines have been responsible for LT’s rushing record and TD record. His new roll this year is OC, well we all know that is just a title as he won’t be calling the plays, but he me be able to influence Norv to run just a little more or in certain situations.
We all should know our receivers coach, Charlie Joiner. If you don’t know who Joiner is watch some Bolts games from the early 80’s!
Moving over to defense, we have new DC John Pagano. He has been with the team for 10 years, starting out as an assistant LB coach. He has been able to help mold guys like Shaun Phillips, Donald Butler, Steven Cooper and new assistant special teams coach Carlos Polk. I think learning under Wade Phillips and Ron Rivera along with seeing how Greg Manusky messed up last season will influence his play calling and schemes, not to mention his brother Chuck has ran a great defense over in Baltimore for years and I am sure he has picked his brain at family gatherings. What I expect to see from our D this year is a more aggressive attack the QB, tackle behind the line of scrimmage, man on man defense.
This brings me to Ron Meeks, an ex-DC with Indy and Carolina. The later didn’t fair so well but, from 2002 -2009 Indy had a decent secondary. It is always nice to have coaches with rings to help your team.
We also have a new LB coach in Joe Barry. Barry was Detroit’s DC from 2001 – 2006, they didn’t fair so well but his LB coaching should be just fine as he played and coached at Linebacker U. (That would be USC).
I see some really good things happening this season, particularly the Lombardi Trophy, that has eluded us for so long! I see us having a top 5 rusher, top 5 passing game and back to a top 10 defense.