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*** Official Chargers 2020 Thread - We need an Octavian. We have an Ant(h)ony ***


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Some fans have been pointing at the upcoming offseason and the Chargers 2021 cap situation as a reason for optimism. It will be interesting to see how that plays out, but I think the optimism is overblown, assuming the 2021 cap is $175M. I posted about it here. Nutshell:

  1. Assume $7,638,204 rollover from 2020 = starting cap of $182,638,204
  2. Assume they keep 32 players under contract for $149,757,044 (excluding Norman, Bilal, and Tyron Johnson)
  3. Add Proven Performance Escalator for Justin Jones and Kyzir White - $2,262,855
  4. Assume they release Trai Turner to clear $11.5M
  5. Assume their 9 draft picks all make the roster, at cap hit of ~$9,801,359
  6. Assume $2,824,753 for practice squad
  7. Assume $3M reserved for 2021 injury replacements

That leaves just under $26.5M in available cap space, without having signed any internal or external free agents and with just 40 of 53 players under contract. This is not much at all, as you can see from the link. I realize other teams will have it even tougher, and maybe the league will reach an agreement with the players union to adjust the 2021 cap upwards by borrowing more from future seasons... but it doesn't seem like a reason for particular optimism for the Chargers.

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With the Patriots no less, I'm sure they got one over on Belichick this time.

"Since joining the NFL" is an artificially small window. AFL down?

I expected to take my fandom from the Chargers to the Colts, and I do expect to root for the Colts as long as Rivers is there. But I have surprisingly not let go of the Chargers so far. I expect my fa

1 minute ago, Nick Vermeil said:
15 minutes ago, Just Win Baby said:

And those 3 wins are over the worst 3 teams in the NFL - Jets, Jaguars, and Bengals, combined record 3-26-1. It's fortunate for the Chargers that all three of those teams happened to be on their schedule this season.

We're kinda like King of the Dip####s.  

Yeah, I was thinking about how sobering it is to realize that these teams have clearly surpassed the Chargers: Dolphins, Raiders, Buffalo, Cleveland, Arizona, and Tampa. As recently as 2018, the Chargers would have been viewed as better than all of them.

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4 hours ago, Just Win Baby said:

Some fans have been pointing at the upcoming offseason and the Chargers 2021 cap situation as a reason for optimism. It will be interesting to see how that plays out, but I think the optimism is overblown, assuming the 2021 cap is $175M. I posted about it here. Nutshell:

  1. Assume $7,638,204 rollover from 2020 = starting cap of $182,638,204
  2. Assume they keep 32 players under contract for $149,757,044 (excluding Norman, Bilal, and Tyron Johnson)
  3. Add Proven Performance Escalator for Justin Jones and Kyzir White - $2,262,855
  4. Assume they release Trai Turner to clear $11.5M
  5. Assume their 9 draft picks all make the roster, at cap hit of ~$9,801,359
  6. Assume $2,824,753 for practice squad
  7. Assume $3M reserved for 2021 injury replacements

That leaves just under $26.5M in available cap space, without having signed any internal or external free agents and with just 40 of 53 players under contract. This is not much at all, as you can see from the link. I realize other teams will have it even tougher, and maybe the league will reach an agreement with the players union to adjust the 2021 cap upwards by borrowing more from future seasons... but it doesn't seem like a reason for particular optimism for the Chargers.

Part of the consideration will be the names involved, both in terms of what rookies come in for that 10M, and the degree of talent they're at risk of losing among their internal free agents. In other words, how much gap will they need to address with that 26.5M? I don't know.

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Competence.

Quote

With Tevaughn Campbell defending, it appeared Mims failed to secure the ball as he landed out of bounds.

The officials ruled the play a catch for 25 yards to the Chargers’ 45-yard line. New York hurried downfield and snapped the ball without a replay review.

“I was curious about that,” Chargers coach Anthony Lynn said. “But [we] did not get a chance to look at it up top, and they didn’t show it in the stadium.”

SoFi Stadium has a dual-sided video board that stretches 120 yards, weighs 2.2 million pounds and is billed as the largest in sports. It has been celebrated for its tremendous clarity.

“We’ve got people looking at it upstairs,” Lynn said of any plays that could be potential reviews. “Yeah, if we get a look at it, we can challenge it. But we didn’t get a look at it.”

:loco:

Maybe they really don't have their own feed to look at these plays? I have no idea.

 

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5 hours ago, Gr00vus said:

Part of the consideration will be the names involved, both in terms of what rookies come in for that 10M, and the degree of talent they're at risk of losing among their internal free agents. In other words, how much gap will they need to address with that 26.5M? I don't know.

Yeah, I addressed that to some degree in the linked post, so didn't want to repeat everything here. Suffice it to say: with ~$26.5M available and needing 13 more players, that is obviously an average of ~$2M/player... but guys like Henry will take a disproportionate amount, so they really won't have that much for other free agents. The only saving grace may be that the lower cap lowers the free agent market.

Also consider that the Chargers only have 4 OL under contract for 2021 at this time and have 7 free agent OL. Even if they go cheap at filling out the OL, for whatever positions not filled via the draft, that still eats into that available cap space considerably.

Edited by Just Win Baby
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They shouldn't let the coaching staff on the plane back to L.A. Fire those miserable ####### pukes in the locker room and let them find their own way home. I can't remember a worse coaching performance. Just flat out dumb throughout the game.

Edited by Gr00vus
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I posted this in another forum last night:

Quote

Just watched Lynn's press conference. Wow.

Agree 100% with Warren Sharp's tweet in the article.

Lynn said he was not sure about many things asked, admitted to miscommunication on a crucial play call, mischaracterized a timeout situation (4th and 2 vs. 4th and 4) and was generally clueless. He specifically was asked if clock management has been an issue this season, and he said no, and doubled down by saying he would be happy to walk anyone through every decision, as if every decision was justifiable.

I can't imagine many (any?) NFL coaches having a press conference that comes across this poorly.

IMO he should be fired tonight or tomorrow. He is who we thought he is, which is not what the team needs. There is no reason to delay.

The article referenced is here. The tweet referenced from Sharp and the others he tweeted before/after are priceless. I have thought since last season that Anthony Lynn is not the guy, but yesterday's performance and press conference should have removed any lingering doubt.

I truly don't know if there is any franchise more dysfunctional than the Chargers. The Jets? I don't know. The Bengals? I don't know. etc.

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3 hours ago, Gr00vus said:

List of assorted potential HCs.

It'd be funny if they ended up with Brian Schottenhiemer. Or would that be sad? Maybe both.

That would be such a Chargers move. Fire the father after going 14-2 and hire the son who was propped up by a MVP-caliber QB and a HOF head coach. IMO that would be a worse hire than Lynn or even McCoy. :X 

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7 minutes ago, Just Win Baby said:

That would be such a Chargers move. Fire the father after going 14-2 and hire the son who was propped up by a MVP-caliber QB and a HOF head coach. IMO that would be a worse hire than Lynn or even McCoy. :X 

It'd be particularly sad because a major part of the justification for firing Marty was that he wanted to hire his son as an assistant.

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36 minutes ago, Just Win Baby said:

I'm pretty sure that it was his brother, but same difference.

You're right it was Kurt. It was so dumb and now so long ago I'd forgotten the details. Maybe Brian could hire Kurt to complete the cycle.

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The silver lining is that this must finally seal his fate.  I mean there's no possible way he could bring him back,  right? 

It was nice to see Bosa on fire,  too.  He was great.  And even in there at the end.  I felt like earlier in the year we'd see him on the sidelines in too many crucial moments at the end. 

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11 hours ago, Gr00vus said:

List of assorted potential HCs.

It'd be funny if they ended up with Brian Schottenhiemer. Or would that be sad? Maybe both.

Hard to find anyone that I love here.  Bienemy as a Charger again...not sure what to think.  Is the success just Ried and Mahomes? I think the defense would love Saleh. That might be a good balance to the offense.  I was about to type Harbaugh back in San Diego? Then I remembered they're in LA. 🙁

 

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3 hours ago, Maurile Tremblay said:

The Chargers get out-coached nearly every game. As a general rule, I think fans are WAY too quick to want everyone fired all the time. But in this case, blame for the consistently poor coaching probably does fall, to some extent, on the coach.

I'm curious if you felt that Norv and McCoy should have been fired when they were. I assume you did not think that about Marty.

I definitely thought McCoy should be fired when he was. I can't really remember what I thought about Norv at the time, but, in retrospect, his tenure looks better than it probably felt at the time.

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McCoy definitely earned his firing. With Norv, I think he was given enough chances to get to a Super Bowl with a pretty talented team and never made it. At some point, if you have championship asperations, and you've determined the guy you've got can't get you there, you have to move on. He wasn't an awful coach (awfuls being guys like Gilbride, Riley, McCoy).

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3 hours ago, Maurile Tremblay said:

I really don't remember.

Surprising, since I know you are a Chargers fan and you just posted that you think fans are WAY too quick to want everyone fired all the time. I figured that meant you would have had definitive opinions about recent Chargers head coaches (i.e., fans were WAY too quick on those coaches, or they weren't, meaning you agreed with the outcome).

Edited by Just Win Baby
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23 minutes ago, Just Win Baby said:

Surprising, since I know you are a Chargers fan and you just posted that you think fans are WAY too quick to want everyone fired all the time. I figured that meant you would have had definitive opinions about recent Chargers head coaches (i.e., fans were WAY too quick on those coaches, or they weren't, meaning you agreed with the outcome).

I probably did have opinions at the time. I just don't remember what they were.

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17 hours ago, Jail said:

Hard to find anyone that I love here.  Bienemy as a Charger again...not sure what to think.  Is the success just Ried and Mahomes? I think the defense would love Saleh. That might be a good balance to the offense.  I was about to type Harbaugh back in San Diego? Then I remembered they're in LA. 🙁

 

Bienemy is the only one who potentially excites me.  It’s a weak list on first glance. Let’s go outside the box and hire Kalani Sitake or Chris Peterson. 

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2 hours ago, Rodrigo Duterte said:

Chargers will be a great win total play next season with their new Head Coach.  Herbert will be better.  Ingram back (he'll still be a Charger right?).  And isn't that safety that's out pretty good?  James?  This is a team that won't take much to be a lot better.

Their win total this year was 7.5 after going 5-11 in  2019 and replacing Philip Rivers with Tyrod Taylor. 

With a real deal 2nd year franchise QB and a coach other than Anthony Lynn, I'm not sure how much lower Vegas would drop that #.

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I'm not sure Ingram will be back. Guy has problems staying on the field and will want a lot of money.

The idea of Derwin James is nice but he also has frequent injuries.

The defense suffers when money and roster spots are reserved for talented dudes who don't play.

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12 hours ago, Rodrigo Duterte said:

Chargers will be a great win total play next season with their new Head Coach.  Herbert will be better.  Ingram back (he'll still be a Charger right?).  And isn't that safety that's out pretty good?  James?  This is a team that won't take much to be a lot better.

I am skeptical. Ingram will not be back. Yes, James will be back, and that will help, assuming he can actually stay healthy. I'm skeptical Herbert will be better. He will be in a new system, and I had already expected some regression because his performance this season has been so unexpectedly great.

More importantly, I'm skeptical this team will ever really get better under Spanos ownership. One of the owner's sons is the President of Football Operations. If it was anyone but a close family member, he would stand to get fired along with the entire front office/GM staff and the entire coaching staff. But that isn't going to happen. So expect him to be back to preside over more of the same that we have seen over the past several seasons.

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I've seen a few people, in other threads, wonder why you'd fire a coach mid season.

Well, things like this maybe:

Quote

Daniel Popper

@danielrpopper

Joey Bosa: "I'm going to show up and I'm going to play hard. I don't know if everybody else is." #Chargers

12:05 PM · Dec 7, 2020·TweetDeck

Lynn's lost the team. Nothing good comes of that. That game Sunday, that looked like a team that's mostly quit to me.

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It's a done deal at this point, or at least it should be, that Lynn won't be back next year.

That's an argument for naming an interim head coach now as sort of an early job interview for next season.

The problem is that the only realistic candidate to take over is Shane Steichen. You can't look outside the organization because everyone worthwhile is already employed. We're definitely not going with Gus Bradley or James Campen or George Stewart, right?

Steichen doesn't seem ready.

Nonetheless, I'd go with Steichen over Lynn for these last few weeks. The season is already lost, so seeing how Steichen handles things is a free look. What's the worst that can happen? It's not worse than how things are already going.

Still, it's hard to blame a team for not making a change in Week 15. (You can still blame them for not making a change sooner.)

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1 hour ago, Maurile Tremblay said:

It's a done deal at this point, or at least it should be, that Lynn won't be back next year.

That's an argument for naming an interim head coach now as sort of an early job interview for next season.

The problem is that the only realistic candidate to take over is Shane Steichen. You can't look outside the organization because everyone worthwhile is already employed. We're definitely not going with Gus Bradley or James Campen or George Stewart, right?

Steichen doesn't seem ready.

Nonetheless, I'd go with Steichen over Lynn for these last few weeks. The season is already lost, so seeing how Steichen handles things is a free look. What's the worst that can happen? It's not worse than how things are already going.

Still, it's hard to blame a team for not making a change in Week 15. (You can still blame them for not making a change sooner.)

How about Pep Hamilton? He is more experienced than Steichen and was a HC in the XFL. He also probably deserves a good amount of credit for Herbert's success, so it could be a nice reward for him.

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Bad season, but it's never a total loss when you virtually knock the Raiders out of the playoffs.

Is it necessary to have AAA grade receivers? Can you still do like the Patriots did and have generic receivers (most of the time), and invest in high quality offensive linemen and QB? Something the Chargers could think about in terms of how they allocate resources in the future.

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7 hours ago, Gr00vus said:

Bad season, but it's never a total loss when you virtually knock the Raiders out of the playoffs.

Is it necessary to have AAA grade receivers? Can you still do like the Patriots did and have generic receivers (most of the time), and invest in high quality offensive linemen and QB? Something the Chargers could think about in terms of how they allocate resources in the future.

Agree, happy for the win over the Raiders.

But, this is the problem with not firing Lynn weeks ago. I'm very worried the team wins 1-2 of the remaining games and the team keeps him another year. IMO that would be the worst possible move of the entire offseason, whether Telesco decision, any roster/personnel decisions, whatever.

This is the Chargers, so I'm fully expecting the worst... :bag:

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  • 2 weeks later...

Have the chargers saved Lynn's job with this streak?

Considering how many guys were out by the end of the game (and it was a ridiculous amount) it was good to see them get tough enough to hang on to the w. Still it may be a long term negative.

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11 hours ago, Gr00vus said:

Have the chargers saved Lynn's job with this streak?

Considering how many guys were out by the end of the game (and it was a ridiculous amount) it was good to see them get tough enough to hang on to the w. Still it may be a long term negative.

Sadly, I think they have. The Athletic beat writer for the Chargers, Daniel Popper, has said in multiple recent articles that he thinks Lynn will be back, including articles last week, before yesterday's game.

It's hard to actually enjoy this winning streak, knowing that it probably means Lynn will return and it has dropped them from contention for a top 5 pick to #12 as of today.

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1 hour ago, Just Win Baby said:

Sadly, I think they have. The Athletic beat writer for the Chargers, Daniel Popper, has said in multiple recent articles that he thinks Lynn will be back, including articles last week, before yesterday's game.

It's hard to actually enjoy this winning streak, knowing that it probably means Lynn will return and it has dropped them from contention for a top 5 pick to #12 as of today.

The guys on the broadcast yesterday (Spiro Dedes and Adam Archuletta - sinc) were saying they think Lynn will be back too. :sadbanana:

They have to get rid of Bradley at least, he's been awful.

And Telesco really needs to dedicate himself to building a top quality offensive line. Watching the Packers game yesterday, at the outset of the game,  when showing the Packers starting offensive line, their PFF ratings were all top 12 or better at their position (except for a rookie who was in for an injured starter - he had no ranking). That's what the Chargers need to be approaching. Rogers is awesome, but I have to believe a decent amount of his success is predicated on the Packers always putting a better than average offensive line in front of him. The Chargers just keep trying to patch things together with cast offs (some of whom used to be good, but are past their prime by the time the get here) and never was draft gambles. It's not good enough.

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1 hour ago, Gr00vus said:

The guys on the broadcast yesterday (Spiro Dedes and Adam Archuletta - sinc) were saying they think Lynn will be back too. :sadbanana:

They have to get rid of Bradley at least, he's been awful.

I agree Bradley should go even if Lynn stays. An interesting thing about that is to think about how it affects some of the returning players. Nwosu is the heir apparent to Ingram at LEO, but LEO is a role that is specific to the defensive scheme Bradley (and all Carroll disciples) uses. If they go for a non-Carroll disciple to replace him, it could affect Nwosu's position and impact... remember, Nwosu was actually drafted as a LB, not a DE.

Regardless, I think the team has to accept the consequences and try to get a DC that will improve their performance.

1 hour ago, Gr00vus said:

And Telesco really needs to dedicate himself to building a top quality offensive line. Watching the Packers game yesterday, at the outset of the game,  when showing the Packers starting offensive line, their PFF ratings were all top 12 or better at their position (except for a rookie who was in for an injured starter - he had no ranking). That's what the Chargers need to be approaching. Rogers is awesome, but I have to believe a decent amount of his success is predicated on the Packers always putting a better than average offensive line in front of him. The Chargers just keep trying to patch things together with cast offs (some of whom used to be good, but are past their prime by the time the get here) and never was draft gambles. It's not good enough.

The problem with the OL is that it is going to be a multi-year project just to get it to average. Consider:

  • Tackles:
    • Starting LT Tevi - PFF grade is 52.9, which ranks #118 out of 136 graded tackles; he has played 1024 snaps
    • Starting RT Bulaga - PFF grade 61.6, which ranks #84T out of 136 graded tackles; he has played 444 snaps
    • Backup Pipkins - PFF grade is 49.6, which ranks #122 out of 136 graded tackles; he has played 499 snaps
    • Backup Norton - PFF grade is 63.9, which ranks #69T out of 136 graded tackles; he has played 237 snaps
  • Guards:
    • Starting LG Lamp - PFF grade is 50.3, which ranks #110 out of 130 graded guards; he has played 1102 snaps
    • Starting RG Turner - PFF grade is 34.9, which ranks #127 out of 130 graded guards; he has played 519 snaps
    • Backup Groy - PFF grade is 57.7, which ranks #83 out of 130 graded guards; he has played 271 snaps
    • Backup Toner - PFF grade is 61.6, which ranks #58 out of 130 graded guards; he has played 236 snaps
    • Backup St. Louis - PFF grade is 37.7, which ranks #124 out of 130 graded guards; he has played 80 snaps
    • Backup Quessenberry - PFF grade is 54.7, which ranks #99 out of 130 graded guards; but he has played just 6 snaps
  • Centers:
    • Starting C Feeney - PFF grade is 47.0, which ranks #51 out of 54 graded guards; he has played 1102 snaps

Pouncey obviously is not listed since he missed the season due to injury.

PFF grades aren't perfect, and perhaps one could argue they may be less accurate for OL than many other positions... but I believe this is a fair representation of their play, which is bottom of NFL level. As an entire unit, which includes RBs, TEs, and WRs, PFF grades the Chargers #30 at pass blocking and #32 at run blocking.

I get that nearly every team has OL issues. But the Chargers need 4 new starters and only have 2-3 adequate depth players at best. It's hard to imagine a worse situation for a crucial position group. One would almost have to willfully try to create a situation this bad.

Now consider:

  • Tevi, Lamp, Feeney, Groy, and Pouncey are UFAs
  • Toner is a RFA
  • St. Louis is a ERFA
  • Turner is under contract in 2021, but can be released with zero dead cap money to clear $11.5M in 2021 cap space

Ideally, the team should release Turner and let all of the other free agents except possibly Toner walk. But that would leave just 4 players to carry over into 2021:

  • RT Bulaga
  • T Pipkins
  • T Norton
  • C/G Quessenberry

Now that they won a few games, they have no shot at the premier LT in the 2021 draft, Sewell. They still need to expend draft capital on OL, but, unfortunately, they also need impact help at CB and pass rush, and I suspect their first round pick will be used to address one of those. I assume Telesco will be back, and we know that he is terrible at drafting OL... here is the list of the ones he has drafted:

  • 2013 1.11 (11) - T/G Fluker - never came close to playing up to draft position; drafted at tackle but forced to move to less valuable guard position
  • 2014 3.25 (89) - G Watt - bust, out of league
  • 2016 3.3 (66) - C Tuerk - bust, out of league
  • 2016 7.3 (224) - G Clark - didn't work out, but just a 7th round pick, so no surprise
  • 2017 2.6 (38) - G Lamp - bust
  • 2017 3.7 (71) - G/C Feeney - bust
  • 2017 6.6 (190) - T Tevi - probably the best of all of these OL picks, given he was a 6th rounder, but he is not good and should be a swing tackle, not a starter
  • 2018 5.18 (155) - C/G Quessenberry - we don't really know, since he hasn't played much... but that is kind of an indictment given how bad this OL is
  • 2019 3.27 (91) - T Pipkins - probably unfair to call him a bust just two seasons in, but drafted as a project player and does not look like he will ever be a capable starter

This implies to me that the team will likely re-sign at least two of Tevi, Lamp, Feeney, maybe all three. Especially if Lynn is back, as I assume he will be. And maybe they will not release Turner, hoping he somehow regains his early career level of play. Whichever ones of those players they re-sign will probably be signed for at least two years. So this situation is not likely to improve much for years.

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