Telesco deserves blame for this mess
By Thomas Conroy
The San Diego Chargers are a few losses away from becoming the punch line to the NFL’s latest joke.
If the Charger loyalists are calling for head coach Mike McCoy’s job, then GM Tom Telesco deserves just as much blame for this mess.
The Spanos family hired Telesco because he was a young executive that thought outside the box when it came to player evaluations and building a roster for the coming season. He inherited a team that needed improvement on the offensive line, the defensive secondary and the wide receiver position.
In three years, Charger fans haven’t seen much improvement to the roster. Injuries and inconsistent play has turned the offensive line into a carousel ride, the secondary is still a work in progress and thank god for Keenan Allen.
Telesco’s drafts have been disappointing, as the lack of quality young talent has caught up to the Chargers this season. None of his draft selections have made an impact on the field. An argument could be made that Allen is Telesco’s best choice, but his road to success has been quite bumpy.
After a great rookie season, Allen struggled badly in his sophomore campaign, as his commitment to becoming the team’s No. 1 receiver was openly questioned. All the chatter inspired Allen to get into better shape this past offseason and the hardwork paid off. He was in the midst of having a potentially record-breaking receiving season before sustaining a lacerated kidney injury that cut short his year.
The other lone bright spots from Telesco’s draft classes are Jerry Attaochu, who has become a decent pass-rusher from the outside linebacker position and Jason Verrett has quietly become a shutdown cornerback in his second year of professional football. Other than that, no gems can be found currently on the Chargers roster.
Contributions from the other choices has been inconsistent, as the roster has too much talent to continually struggle winning games each week. D.J. Fluker, Melvin Ingram and Manti Te’o have been solid but not spectacular in their time as starters. The selection of Melvin Gordon this past spring seems to be a luxury pick that the Chargers couldn’t afford, especially when the front office failed to seize the opportunity to improve the state of front line on both sides of the ball, which is paramount for success. Gordon has been somewhat of a disappointment, but the current state of the offensive line could make any running back look bad.
Is Telesco stubbornly trying to fit a square peg into a round hole? The quicker he realizes that this core group cannot develop that cohesion needed to evolve into a playoff contender, the better for all.
The city of San Diego wonders if the Chargers will even be in town much longer, as a black cloud remains over Qualcomm Stadium for yet another dismal season. If the team moves to Los Angeles, then the Spanos family has no other choice but to fire Telesco and McCoy and begin anew in another rebuilding process.