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San Diego shake-up could be coming

The recent comments from Chargers G.M. A.J. Smith regarding the performance of the team he built weren’t merely idle chatter.

Smith and the coaching staff apparently are serious about taking action on the fly to fix the problems that have plagued the team.

According to the San Diego Union-Tribune, Smith is “spending time on the phone” with other teams, possibly in the hopes of swinging one or more trades before the October 20 deadline.  (And given linebacker Shawne Merriman’s comments from Wednesday, his contract status, and the general vibrations coming from the organization suggesting that he won’t be part of the team’s future, Merriman possibly could be on the block.)

The Union-Tribune also reports that there’s a feeling within the locker room that defensive jobs are “up for grabs.”  Defensive coordinator Ron Rivera reportedly sent that message to his troops earlier this week.

“I think it was the best thing for our defense,” cornerback Quentin
Jammer told the Union-Tribune.  “You get your [rear end] run through like that, it puts
everything in perspective, and I think we’ll be better for it.  There is
going to be changes.  You change the way you approach things, change the
way you do things.  I think it was the best wake-up call for us.”

It remains to be seen whether the changes result in any changes in the on-field product when the Chargers return to action on October 19, with a Monday night visit from the Broncos.

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42 Responses to “San Diego shake-up could be coming”
  1. doublestuffflorios says: Oct 8, 2009 7:40 AM

    It’s not time to hit the panic button. The Chargers are 2-2. Their best start in three years.
    This team doesn’t start playing until December.
    Over the last three years they are 14-0 in December. I’m just not sold on Norv Turner as head coach. As far as Merriman goes, he reminds me of Javon Kearse. One huge year and the media jumps all over him. He gets injured and you never hear from him again. If the Chargers can swing a trade for a lineman that can stay healthy I say go for it.

  2. chief says: Oct 8, 2009 7:59 AM

    He’s on the phone because they can’t afford to sign all their free agents after the Rivers deal. Vincent Jackson, Chris Chambers, Malcolm Floyd, Marcus McNeill, Jeromey Clary, Shawne Merriman, and Darren Sproles all need new deals.

  3. Joe in Toronto, Canada says: Oct 8, 2009 8:05 AM

    I really can’t see anyone giving up anything for Merriman. He was awesome while roided up and garbage ever since they caught him.
    The scheme was very simple. Stop the run with big Jamal at the nose on 1st and 2nd down and send the OLB’s on third down.
    With the roided up Merriman on one side and fast Phillps on the other, it was a problem, no doubt about it.
    It WAS.

  4. Quagmire says: Oct 8, 2009 8:35 AM

    Merriman really is quite average without the juice.

  5. Kevin from Philly says: Oct 8, 2009 8:42 AM

    I wonder if the Eagles would have any interest. If a 32 year old Trotter is our best current option, Merriman at 80% and out of position might be better.

  6. TheDPR says: Oct 8, 2009 9:29 AM

    A few major problems with the Chargers defense.
    1. Shawne Merriman is not a complete football player. He’s a pass rusher and that’s really about it. He’s little help in coverage or against the run. That’s being generous; he’s often a liability in those cases.
    2. Defensive captain and team leader Stephen Cooper has been playing with a bum knee this season. His lack of explosion to the ball has been evident. The bye week should help this, if he rests.
    3. Their DL is mediocre.

  7. Lucky5927 says: Oct 8, 2009 9:36 AM

    chief says:
    October 8, 2009 7:59 AM
    He’s on the phone because they can’t afford to sign all their free agents after the Rivers deal. Vincent Jackson, Chris Chambers, Malcolm Floyd, Marcus McNeill, Jeromey Clary, Shawne Merriman, and Darren Sproles all need new deals.
    I couldn’t agree more with you Chief. And now Smith has a reason to jettison some of the talent before teams can afford to be picky. Someone will bite on the Merriman deal, because teams are desperate to make the playoffs. Smith was planning ahead when he drafted larry English. Now he needs a big Nose Tackle to ease the loss of Williams. Doubt a team will do that though. Not many teams have that kind of DT tackle and the ones that do will not stoop to trading for Merriman.

  8. JJCheesehead says: Oct 8, 2009 9:39 AM

    The Packers would take Merriman in a heart beat. Maybe give up a 3rd and Johnny Jolly/Brandon Chillar/straight up for AJ Hawk. Put him 2000 miles from Hollywood and that life and I think he can get his head back into football. He was a stud before he realized the benefits of being a professional athlete.

  9. promin1 says: Oct 8, 2009 9:46 AM

    LMAO at all the tools who were critical of the Manning -Rivers trade. Giants seemed like they gave up alot at the time. In retrospect…they got the better end of the deal.

  10. Bazooka Joe says: Oct 8, 2009 9:54 AM

    The Ravens would gladly pay a 1st and 3rd for Vincent Jackson. We’d also pay a 3rd for Malcolm Floyd. Either/or that is.
    Also, Shawn Merriman should come home to Baltimore.

  11. Krow says: Oct 8, 2009 10:01 AM

    Merriman does have that criminal attitude to fit into Philly. The coach could help him with his “supplement” problem too.

  12. Filbertkiwi71 says: Oct 8, 2009 10:07 AM

    chief says:
    October 8, 2009 7:59 AM
    “He’s on the phone because they can’t afford to sign all their free agents after the Rivers deal. Vincent Jackson, Chris Chambers, Malcolm Floyd, Marcus McNeill, Jeromey Clary, Shawne Merriman, and Darren Sproles all need new deals.”
    ————-
    I will be surprised if LT is a Charger next year. The Chargers should save a bunch of money there.
    I think the next person to go will be Cromartie. I don’t know if they can get much for him, but if they trade him, then he won’t be playing for the Chargers which will be an improvement. It is painful watching him play defense. If you want to call what he does on the field playing defense. How hard can it be to play zone defense? He is probably more suited to play man to man coverage.
    The Chargers I think have finally learned that you can’t build a team entirely through the draft. There needs to be veteran leadership on the defensive side of the ball, which is something the Chargers are missing badly.
    The problem with trading Merriman is that it opens up a hole in the outside linebacker position. Of course if the Chargers decide to transition from a 3-4 to a 4-3, then they would have too many linebackers on the roster. Merriman is coming off of two injuries, so only time will tell how well he will play once he is all healed up.
    I could see the Chargers trading Chambers. The Chargers do have some depth at the receiver position.
    Regardless what happens, Rivera’s defense isn’t aggressive enough. If it was more aggressive, then maybe the secondary and the run defense wouldn’t look so bad.

  13. ChicagoJo says: Oct 8, 2009 10:07 AM

    “JJCheesehead says:
    October 8, 2009 9:39 AM
    The Packers would take Merriman in a heart beat”
    I hope Merriman does go to Green Bay, their D is desperate enough to give up good players for him and he will suck just as bad there as he does now. He’s just like Sosa, nothing without the juice. If history is any judge, the Redskins will trade high draft picks for him and regret it by the end of the season.
    By the way Packers fans, you should be dreaming about an offensive line. Your pass rush isn’t that bad, it just looked like it on Monday night because Capers wisely decided to hold 8 guys in coverage so. It didn’t work out too well, but it was the right strategy, especially considering how you contained the run.

  14. Smush Rodrigez says: Oct 8, 2009 10:13 AM

    Kevin from Philly says:
    October 8, 2009 8:42 AM
    I wonder if the Eagles would have any interest. If a 32 year old Trotter is our best current option, Merriman at 80% and out of position might be better.
    ****
    I agree. But Merriman needs a new contract so I do not see this happening. On the flip side, the Eagles do have draft picks.

  15. Smush Rodrigez says: Oct 8, 2009 10:14 AM

    promin1 says:
    October 8, 2009 9:46 AM
    LMAO at all the tools who were critical of the Manning -Rivers trade. Giants seemed like they gave up alot at the time. In retrospect…they got the better end of the deal.
    ****
    Totally diagree. Rivers is at worst equal to Eli. They got good years out of Merriman and will get compensated for him.

  16. TheWizard says: Oct 8, 2009 10:15 AM

    I thought the shake-up was firing the coach after a 14-2 season?
    Guess that one didn’t work out so good.

  17. Filbertkiwi71 says: Oct 8, 2009 10:15 AM

    promin1 says:
    October 8, 2009 9:46 AM
    “LMAO at all the tools who were critical of the Manning -Rivers trade. Giants seemed like they gave up alot at the time. In retrospect…they got the better end of the deal.”
    —————
    Manning can’t fill Rivers’ jock. Rivers is by far the superior QB. Yeah, the Giants won a SB under Manning, but the defense is what got them there, and if the Patriots DB was able to hold on to a pick, then Manning wouldn’t have gotten any SB win. Manning hurt his widdle foot and left last weeks game, Rivers played with a bad leg a couple years back through the playoffs. You probably would have 2 SB wins if you had kept the picks and Rivers.

  18. ceez says: Oct 8, 2009 10:54 AM

    The Chargers can go to h*ll for all I care, but I will admit that Rivers is an excellent QB. But you Charger fans are stupid. Was it the Giant D that threw the game winning TD pass to Plax in the SB….No, it was Eli. In fact our D did not hold them in the fourth quarter and that is why we were playing from behind at the end. They put us in a position to win but it was Eli and O that made it happen. I am not in any way discrediting what our D did that day but the truth is we needed our QB to drive us down the field and win the game which he did. Eli is one of the if not the most clutch QB in the NFL right now.
    Hey Fibler, has Eli missed a game yet? So you making the assumption that he wont play and is less tougher than Phillp Rivers is just ignorant. Oh and about your “if the Patriots DB was able to hold on to a pick” comment…….If my aunt had testies she would be my uncle. Get over it, the Giants are a better organization than the chargers. We have a better GM, and eventually all you mental midgets in SD will see that we have the better QB too. GO GIANTS!!!!!!!!!

  19. SmackMyVickUp says: Oct 8, 2009 10:59 AM

    http://www.firenorv.net/
    Rivera was part of the dominant Bears D of the 80′s and was on board when they won the SB in ’85.
    Rivera learned under coaches who favor aggressive defensive philosophies, such as Buddy Ryan, Jim Johnson and Lovie Smith. He employs the 4-3 defensive scheme.
    Watching the Chargers they hardly ever blitz or do anything fancy on Defense. Considering Rivera’s past it just doesn’t seem right. Wonder if Norv wants him to play conservative (likely) or maybe he feels he doesn’t have the personnel – which is hard to believe.
    When you consider Norv’s past of never having his team ready before December hopefully the shakeup happens on more than just the defense.

  20. tv says: Oct 8, 2009 11:04 AM

    This team is the most over-hyped non-entity in the NFL.
    Each year we hear about all the “talent” on the team and they do nothing. Just a few years ago Eli wouldn’t go to the team because of the lack of talent, and then shortly thereafter they had “the most talented team in the NFL”. How did that happen overnight? What are the results? Nada!
    Perhaps AJ Smith was also publishing new releases about the “talent” he assembled because it sure seems there is some media bias here.
    And Merry-man is a douche bag who is about the most overrated D player in the game. Even Ray Lewis likely thinks this douche is overrated.

  21. Deckoh says: Oct 8, 2009 11:12 AM

    Filbert is correct Ceez. The only reason the Giants got to the SB is because of the D and only the D. Grab the stats of both qb’s and check it. Rivers is more of a complete Qb. The D kills the chargers everytime, every year.

  22. troll_aikman8 says: Oct 8, 2009 11:21 AM

    With Philip Rivers, the Giants win one more SB.
    Manning is no Philip Rivers. His defense got him a ring.

  23. HoneyB says: Oct 8, 2009 11:33 AM

    They need to do more than just trade a few players. How about get a new head coach and then find a new GM. Change is needed every where in this organization. If some of these players would get rid of their egos, I think this team would be fine. Until that happens, the San Diego Chargers will always be on the losing end.

  24. ceez says: Oct 8, 2009 11:37 AM

    Deckoh….re-read my post. I never said Eli is better than Rivers right now. In fact, I feel that comparison is best saved for later when both players are done and we can compare carrer stats. But, I would never trade Eli for Rivers. Eli is perfect for NY, Rivers is waaaaaaaaay too emotional and the media in NY would have ate him alive. But that’s neither here nor there.
    I acknowledge that our D was a huge part of our succes but lets not forgot what Eli did as well. He threw ONE pick in the entire post season which wasn’t even his fault. He drove us with less than a mintue left in the first half to score a hugh TD in Dallas to even the game out after the cowboys ran the ball down our throats the entire half. He was perfect in TB the week before and of course he outplayed Farve in GB in record cold weather.
    Look, SD has been a good team for a while but Chrager fans always seem to think their team is better than what they really are. 15-1 and a AFC championshiop appearence does not out-weigh an actuall SB victory. As far as I’m concerned that alone gives the edge to the Giants as far as who won the trade. We are trying to establish a Dynasty-like team while SD is considering drastic changes. You do the math.

  25. ceez says: Oct 8, 2009 11:48 AM

    SoundS right coming from a ‘girls fan. Hey Troll_aikman….. It’s been 13 years and counting. Oh by the way tell Jerrah we Giant fans thank him for his warm welcome. Glad we could ruin that whole expreience for you all. Romo is no Eli Manning…

  26. D. J. Fone says: Oct 8, 2009 12:18 PM

    Without the steriods, and without Jamal Williams tying up three OLs in the middle, Shawne Merriman is John Barefield. Barefield was the former St. Louis Football Cardinals linebacker and top draft pick who placed a quarter in his ear and called himself “The 8th Wonder of the World”….until he got *itch-slapped all over the field every Sunday by NFL opponents.

  27. D. J. Fone says: Oct 8, 2009 12:21 PM

    There might also be trade value for Antonio Cromartie, who remains a tremendous natural athlete, but whose head hasn’t been in the game since he fathered seven kids in five states.
    How can you immerse yourself in game films and chalk talks when every time your cellphone rings it’s from another baby-mama?

  28. packerjoeZ says: Oct 8, 2009 12:23 PM

    Maybe the Chargers should trade for Braylon Edwards.

  29. Frank Burns says: Oct 8, 2009 12:25 PM

    troll_aikman8 says:
    October 8, 2009 11:21 AM
    With Philip Rivers, the Giants win one more SB.
    Manning is no Philip Rivers. His defense got him a ring.
    —————————————–
    Why on earth so many are so high on Phil Rivers is beyond me. For a guy who has won exactly NOTHING, he sure does get a lot of hype.
    Rivers is the guy nicknamed “Carried by LT” his first couple years. He basically fetched coffee while Big Ben and Eli were notching rings. Then Rivers developed a little, looked good in a weak division playing the likes of KC and the Raiders, and everybody got all dreamy over him.
    Rivers got into the playoffs last year, and then got rescued by Sproles who bailed him about vs. the Colts. The next week the Steelers shut down Sproles, and the Chargers had nothing, since Rivers couldn’t carry the load. Game over, enjoy the golfing.
    Again, what exactly has Rivers accomplished in this league?

  30. phillyboltsfan says: Oct 8, 2009 12:44 PM

    Ceez….. Eli is the most clutch QB in the league ? Really ? Tom Brady and Big Ben say hello.
    Frank Burns….. You are correct that Rivers who is 3-3 in the playoffs hasn’t won “anything”, however do yourself a favor and go look up his stats and tell me is not good. I mean he only won 2 of his playoff games with a bad leg and almost got SD a comeback win last week against Pitt. Who is that you root for ?

  31. RaiderChile says: Oct 8, 2009 1:00 PM

    I hope the Raiders go after Merriman so they can use him to keep Seymour on board. At least the defense is getting better. No hope for the offense.
    TO FRANK BURNS:
    Rivers showed toughness when he played with a busted knee in an AFC title game and LT sat hiding under his dark shield helmet on the bench. I’d take Rivers for that. He plays tough. The guy gets the love for his toughness and play making ability.
    What team to you root for?

  32. ceez says: Oct 8, 2009 1:09 PM

    phillyboltsfan…………………. I did say one of if no the most. That implies it’s arguble. Eli is not better than Tom Brady, big ben…yes IMO.What else do all the Qb’s you mentioned and Eli have in Common? They are all champions. Nuff said.

  33. Frank Burns says: Oct 8, 2009 1:28 PM

    phillyboltsfan says:
    October 8, 2009 12:44 PM
    Ceez….. Eli is the most clutch QB in the league ? Really ? Tom Brady and Big Ben say hello.
    Frank Burns….. You are correct that Rivers who is 3-3 in the playoffs hasn’t won “anything”, however do yourself a favor and go look up his stats and tell me is not good. I mean he only won 2 of his playoff games with a bad leg and almost got SD a comeback win last week against Pitt. Who is that you root for ?
    ——————————————
    Again, you people with your crazy cockeyed way of seeing things! So, Rivers “almost got SD a comeback win” vs. Pitt? Are you KIDDING? Basically he had 87 freakin’ passing yards through 3 quarters until your special teams swiped a freaky ball off a punt return and ran it back for a TD — a fluke play, but what in God’s name did Rivers have to do with that score, huh? Nothing!
    Then the special teams took an onside kick and gave Phil the ball on the 50, when the Steelers went into prevent. Again, special teams set that up on a silver platter. Amazing the credit you chums want to give this guy!
    Did you even see that game? If you did you’d know that this is what happened. The Steelers, like they did in the playoffs, shut down Sproles and Rivers did nothing on his own. Only when special teams brought the team back did Rivers do anything in garbage time. Gimme a break!

  34. Frank Burns says: Oct 8, 2009 2:06 PM

    ceez says:
    October 8, 2009 1:09 PM
    phillyboltsfan…………………. I did say one of if no the most. That implies it’s arguble. Eli is not better than Tom Brady, big ben…yes IMO.What else do all the Qb’s you mentioned and Eli have in Common? They are all champions. Nuff said.
    —————————–
    Big Ben and Brady have more 4th quarter comebacks than the rest of the NFL QBs COMBINED… argument over. They are simply the best 2 QBs going right now. Anyone who takes Eli over Ben is smoking crack.

  35. phillyboltsfan says: Oct 8, 2009 2:35 PM

    You still haven’t answered who you root for ?
    My view of Rivers has blinders ? Your nuts and I’m sure there is plenty of people that would take Rivers over most of the QBs in the league. You talk like he is David Carr.

  36. ceez says: Oct 8, 2009 2:56 PM

    Frank Burns…… IMO I would chose Eli but I am a Giants fan and I did state is was AN OPINOIN. I repect Big Ben and what he has accomplished. Where in anything that I have written thus far have I discredited any QB (except Romo) that has been mentioned. I guess reading comphrension is not your thing.

  37. Frank Burns says: Oct 8, 2009 4:44 PM

    phillyboltsfan says:
    October 8, 2009 2:35 PM
    You still haven’t answered who you root for ?
    My view of Rivers has blinders ? Your nuts and I’m sure there is plenty of people that would take Rivers over most of the QBs in the league. You talk like he is David Carr.
    —————————————
    No, the problem is YOU talk like he’s Joe Montana. I never said Rivers sucks, and in fact I think he’s a good young QB. He is overrated, though, considering what he hasn’t accomplished.
    I might take him over a lot of QBs, but that doesn’t put him at the top with Brady, Ben and Manning yet.

  38. Frank Burns says: Oct 8, 2009 4:46 PM

    ceez says:
    October 8, 2009 2:56 PM
    Frank Burns…… IMO I would chose Eli but I am a Giants fan and I did state is was AN OPINOIN. I repect Big Ben and what he has accomplished. Where in anything that I have written thus far have I discredited any QB (except Romo) that has been mentioned. I guess reading comphrension is not your thing.
    ———————————————-
    No, the trouble is with your reading skills. Show me where I claimed you “discredited” any QB anywhere — I merely offered support to crush your ridiculous idea about Eli. Read again, son, and learn.

  39. ceez says: Oct 8, 2009 6:18 PM

    Frank Burns…….When you say that who ever picks Eli over Ben is smoking crack suggests that it a disservice to Ben R to pick Eli. Understand your confusion now dummy?
    Oh and you didnt “crush” anything, I gave an opinion and you disagree, do you want a cookie now. Idiot.
    Ben R is an elite QB and I may be wrong in saying Eli is better but, IT IS MY OPINION!!!! Get it?

  40. Richm2256 says: Oct 8, 2009 7:06 PM

    Girls, girls, stop it already! Enough with the public arguing, already!
    Geez.

  41. Beezer says: Oct 8, 2009 7:53 PM

    Filbertkiwi71
    Yeah up until the past two years the Chargers have had a more talented roster and were predicted by all the “experts” to be a superbowl contender every year yet Rivers doesn’t have a superbowl win. Now you say Rivers would have won two with the Giants with a less talented team? Excellent logic there! Rivers inherited a very good defense, the best tight end and running back in the NFL.
    Phillyboltsfan, check out romo’s stats what is his playoff record. Who gives a crap that someone passes for a few more yards/touchdowns all i want is championships.
    Frank Burns Eli has as many as if not more 4th quarter comebacks than Ben.

  42. Frank Burns says: Oct 9, 2009 1:26 PM

    Beezer says:
    October 8, 2009 7:53 PM
    Frank Burns Eli has as many as if not more 4th quarter comebacks than Ben.
    ——————————————-
    ALL-TIME 4TH QUARTER QB COMEBACKS
    QB Reported Actual
    John Elway 47 34
    Brett Favre 42 27
    Dan Marino 37 36
    Peyton Manning 37 28
    Drew Bledsoe 32 24
    Joe Montana 31 31
    Johnny Unitas 31 34
    Tom Brady 28 20
    Roger Staubach 23 15
    Ben Roethlisberger 19 15
    Chad Pennington 7 7
    Jay Cutler 7 5
    http://www.pro-football-reference.com/blog/?p=3401
    Funny, I see PEYTON Manning’s name on that list… sorry dude, no cigar.

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