Earlier this week, Chargers president Dean Spanos found himself facing a barrage of questions regarding the decision to stick with coach Norv Turner after five seasons. It was fitting, then, for Turner to answer plenty of questions regarding his decision to not stick with defensive coordinator Greg Manusky after only one.
“When the season ends you go and evaluate the things that you feel are critical,” Turner said in remarks distributed by the team. “Moving forward, I just thought this was the best opportunity for our team to go do the things we’re capable of doing.”
And plenty of Chargers fans would say that reasoning should have pointed to a new head coach.
The fact that new defensive coordinator John Pagano reportedly was planning to join Jim Mora at UCLA apparently was a factor in the decision to dump Manusky and promote Pagano.
“I think anytime you’re in a process of making a decision, a lot of things go into it,” Turner said. “Certainly we considered everything that was involved.”
Turner referred on several occasions to “fit” — that Pagano is and Manusky wasn’t. Plenty of Chargers fans would say that Turner should have realized that a year ago, before hiring Manusky from the 49ers and passing over Pagano.
Still, Turner insisted that Manusky isn’t the scapegoat for an 8-8 season that resulted in no playoff appearance. “That’s always the question that’s asked when you make a change,” Turner said. “That’s always what’s insinuated. I don’t believe in that. I think, as I said, I’m not looking back. I’m looking forward and looking for the things we need to do to get better in the future.”
That’s a good idea. Because if the Chargers don’t do the things they need to do go get better in the future, Turner could be the next former Chargers employee about whom a press conference is being conducted.