Chargers Identity Crisis in 17-10 Loss to Bengals?


Dec 1, 2013; San Diego, CA, USA; San Diego Chargers head coach Mike McCoy questions a call made by officials during the second half against the Cincinnati Bengals at Qualcomm Stadium. The Bengals won 17-10. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

At the conclusion of last season Norv Turner stated the fans should be patient with the next incoming staff. He went on to explain that this team isn’t one or two players away from being competitive for a championship. We all knew that, but Turner insisted that things would be different every season and the problems would be fixed. Being the fans we are, we let him continue to give us the “Coach talk”, or lip service and let him “stay the course” right out of his third tenure as Head Coach. Now this isn’t about blaming Norv for the 17-10 loss to the Bengals, far from it. This is about “Identity”.

As fans we are familiar with Turner’s tenure and it’s results, while the case can be made the 2013 squad has similarities to its predecessor, the reality is they came under different circumstances. Now before you get riled up that I’m about to make excuses for McCoy, not a chance. I stated before the season started, I wasn’t going hold the new regime accountable to Turner and Smith’s disappointments. A good example would be, Mathews had a history of fumbles. Yes? “Under Turner“. I wanted to give a fair assessment of RM24 under McCoy. So far he’s fumbled twice and almost has half as many +100 yard rushes in 12 games, than he had the entire time under Turner. But enough of that, back the point: Identity. That is the overall picture of what I see, this team doesn’t have an identity. The win one, lose one is a symptom of not being sure of who they are. If I have to bring things into context, is this team a physical and disciplined with big play ability? Some time. Are the Chargers “feared” for its front seven, that makes offenses one-dimensional? No. Are they ground and pound, that can kill you with the pass? Maybe glimpses. That’s what I mean, I can’t tell you what they are good at, because they are not consistent enough to be identified as a team that people say, ” Hey, the Chargers are a team that will beat you with……?”.

Right now they are a team with a Rookie Head Coach. A former Head Coach as the conservative play calling Offensive Coordinator. A career Linebacker Coach that was given the job as Defensive Coordinator, for the purpose of continuity. A patch work O-Line that has exceeded expectations “because of” the O-Line Coach. A former DB Coach that was fired from his former gig (in Denver) because his DB’s were out of position and got beat. A new offensive scheme, new schedule for workouts, training staff, and practice. Lastly a mishmash of layover players from 2012, Rookies and FA that really don’t know each other that well, who’s total playing experience, is on the light side. It’s not ONE thing.

This is what they REALLY have to overcome, a lot of NEW. And somewhere in that new, they need to find what they are good at and stick to it. What I think is, the coaching staff only sees Rivers and Weddle, everybody else is sorting themselves out as to who the coaches can lean on and/or build from. Now what I think doesn’t matter, but it’s my perspective, from the outside, looking in.

So it’s your turn to sound off Bolt Backers! Am I on to something, or just on something? Is Mike the real McCoy or Norval the second coming? Did the Chargers make some good personnel changes? Or is it too little too late? Show you love, or hate, I’m a big boy.