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Telesco steering Chargers in the right direction

Discussion in 'Chargers Fan Forum' started by Blue Bolt, May 11, 2013.

  1. Blue Bolt
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    Blue Bolt Persona Non Grata

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    Telesco steering Chargers in right direction

    [​IMG]
    Brian Spurlock/USA TODAY Sports

    "Its my job to know the league," said GM Tom Telesco. "... It's my job to study rosters every day."

    When Tom Telesco received an interview for the San Diego Chargers’ vacant general manager post in January, it was considered a terrific opportunity in the career of promising young front-office man.

    Telesco wasn’t considered a sure bet to be hired to pump life into a stale franchise after the 10-year A.J. Smith era. But Telesco took control of his future and essentially stole the job.

    It was well known that the Chargers were focused on removing Smith and head coach Norv Turner. Longtime personnel man Jimmy Raye was widely considered as a slam-dunk to be promoted. The Chargers were fine with the front office as a whole. They figured Smith’s time with the team had run its course and that the bigger issue was finding a replacement for Turner.

    Then, Telesco interviewed. Everything changed. Telesco opened the Chargers’ minds. Perhaps an outside voice to lead the front voice was exactly what the team needed. And in a big upset, the Chargers named the 40-year-old Indianapolis front-office man to replace Smith.

    The surprise hiring was met with applause from around the league. Telesco was a career front-office man and a protégée of former Colts’ general manager Bill Polian. Telesco was known for a keen scouting eye and was credited with helping turn the Colts back into a playoff team by restocking the roster.

    “Tom has that no-stone-unturned mindset,” said Ryan Grigson, his boss in Indianapolis last year. “Tom never stops working. That's what the Chargers are going to appreciate. If I asked Tom if this guy could play or not, an hour later I was getting a text from him or he was knocking on my door, giving me a thumbs-up or a thumbs-down. Tom is a bright, bright, bright guy with a great work ethic.”
    Ownership was reportedly blown away by Telesco's knowledge of the Chargers' roster during his interview. The Spanos family was stunned by his vision for the team moving forward.

    I asked Telesco about that, and he brushed it off.

    “It’s my job to know the league,” said Telesco, polite as always. “I have to know that stuff. It’s my job to study rosters every day.”

    Polian, now an ESPN analyst, wasn’t surprised that Telesco impressed the Chargers. Telesco first joined the NFL with Carolina in 1995 when Polian ran the Panthers. He followed Polian to Indianapolis in 1998.

    “Tom knows the league, he does what it takes to be good at his job,” Polian said. “He’s a hard worker. He’s level-headed. He’s a great judge of talent … He will be great in San Diego.”

    His first offseason in San Diego has been positive. He received kudos for tabbing heavily sought-after Denver offensive coordinator Mike McCoy to coach the team. Chargers employees tout Telesco, who played receiver at noted NFL coaching and front-office factory John Carroll University in Ohio, as friendly. They say he has re-energized a building that lacked excitement at the end of the Smith era.

    Most league observers believe the Chargers, who have gone three seasons without making the playoffs, had one of the best drafts in the NFL. The Chargers scored big in the first three rounds with the selections of Alabama right tackle D.J. Fluker (first round), Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o (second) and California receiver Keenan Allen (third). ESPN analysts Todd McShay and Mel Kiper both said during the draft that Telesco got three first-round picks with his first three choices. Telesco aggressively went after Te’o, who was falling, and traded up on the clock to take him.

    Telesco was less aggressive in free agency. The cap-strapped Chargers were active, but they didn’t make many splashes. They did get several players who should help right away, starting with cornerback Derek Cox, guard Chad Rinehart and running back Danny Woodhead.

    San Diego has not sufficiently addressed its biggest need yet: left tackle. Free-agent signing King Dunlap is currently expected to start there even though he is not considered a solid option. In Telesco’s defense, the Chargers never really had a great chance of adding a top option at the position because of cap issues and because the top three draft options were gone after the first four picks of the draft.

    Regardless of whether the Chargers enter Telesco’s first season a finished project, he promises to continue to approach the job his way.

    “(I) come into work every day trying to find the best players we can,” Telesco said. “Part of building chemistry with the team and the team process is getting to know the coaches well, getting to know the scouts, the front office. That's all part of team building for me. It's just trying to get to know everybody really well.”
    • Informative Informative x 1
  2. Lance19
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    Lance19 BoltTalker

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    Well, I must say, while I sure wish I'd read more "league observers" declare that our
    humble Bolts "had one of the best drafts in the NFL," it sounds more like something
    a San Diego writer would offer...
    (not that Bill Williamson can't be counted on to be overly rosy, re. all things AFC West)
  3. ssnake86
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    ssnake86 BoltTalker

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    I'm so glad we didn't hire someone from within the organization like Jimmy Raye. I feel like that would of been a complete disaster and more of the same. The guy was AJ's disciple, and I'm sure a lot of our horrible draft choices over the years were due to him(Larry English over Clay Matthews??! You gotta be kidding :( ). I listened to some interviews from the 2011 draft, and Raye trying to explain why they drafted Mouton and some other picks was sad. Guy was projected as 6th round pick, we took in the 2nd. To there credit though Liuget has gone on to outperform both DT's drafted ahead of him, Fairely(#13) and Dareus(#3). Gilchrist seems to be another bust who seems to get burned by every WR in the league, hence why were probably moving him to SS. Word is still out on Brown and Wright.

    Time will tell how Telesco pans out, but it's looking really good so far; I think the biggest thing is just having a whole new front office with new people in there. Raye wouldn't of brought any of that new fresh feeling.
    • Agree Agree x 2
  4. Lance19
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    Lance19 BoltTalker

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    While I know it's always tempting to play the hindsight card (I mean, who in 2013 wouldn't take Mathews over English?) I just feel like we usually have to re-write the past :rolleyes: to do it. I was just looking at a Pats-fan thread from March 2009 titled:
    "Larry English or Clay Matthews?" http://www.patsfans.com/new-england-patriots/messageboard/13/224567-larry-english-clay-matthews.html
    English was preferred over Clay by a mile. (74% to 26%) Now, I'm not saying that I suddenly have massive faith in the wisdom of fan sites, just that many of us remember the big concerns about Mathews that caused 25 teams to pass on him,
    despite his spectacular NFL pedigree. Again, I'm not arguing for a second that I wouldn't much, much
    prefer Mathews to English...but to make it sound like it was a no-brainer in 2009 just seems at odds with the facts.
  5. ssnake86
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    ssnake86 BoltTalker

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    Interesting cause a couple of my friends told me at the time English was quite a reach. I checked up on it on NFL Draft Scout and he was given a mid 2nd round grade, while Matthews was rated 1 round grade. I fully admit I wasn't following the draft at the time.

    this is what I'm referring to.
    http://www.nfldraftscout.com/rating...OLB&draftyear=2009&sortorder=tsxpos&order=ASC

    His combine numbers were pretty bad compared to every other OLB as well.
  6. Blue Bolt
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    Blue Bolt Persona Non Grata

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    Well, despite what a few Pats fans thought, the general consensus from the draftniks was that English wasn't a 1st round talent. Unfortunately for us, he doesn't look like a 2nd or 3rd round talent either.
  7. Lance19
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    Lance19 BoltTalker

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    English was a 1 by some scouts, a 2 by others...but considered by many to be the best pure outside
    pressure...and a great fit for a 3-4 team. The Chargers had immediate need to replace Merriman's productivity.

    Mathews was also a late 1 or early 2 for a lot of people, (http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/football/2009/draft/players/22326.html)
    but there were many red flags: how could a guy with father and uncle (so successful in the NFL) end up a walk-on?
    (hint: he was grossly undersized...and his later shocking, sudden growth spawned rumors of HGH abuse)
    A high first round pick on a guy with 10 college starts? Again, you don't need to take my word for it,
    just look at where Matthews was drafted if you think people were sure--in 2009--that he'd be a lock...

    p.s. Since polls here rarely get more than a dozen responses, I'd say 65 Pats fans (going 3 to 1 for English) is worth mentioning, if the question is, "Was Matthews over English really such a no-brainer in early 2009?"
  8. ssnake86
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    I really wonder why he's been such a bust for us then. He's only ever started 4 games, and hasn't started any in the past two years. Has he just been that bad in camp/practice? I know he had some injury issues a couple years back, but it's doesn't explain the lack of playing time. I think he was 3rd on our depth chart last year? at least until Barnes was hurt he was.
  9. Lance19
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    Actually, I think his horrible record re. injuries does explain just about everything.

    Coming out of college, English was elite...now after being injured for the overwhelming majority of his career,
    he just isn't showing much...and would certainly be gone by now if not for the recent loss of other linebackers.
    Has all the injury time crippled his game, or was he just never going to excel at the NFL level anyway?
    No one knows (which is not to say that loudmouths won't pretend they know). :whistling:
    At any rate, those are the two most common reasons why successful college players don't make it in the NFL,
    anyway, so, not really a huge surprise.

    One thing's for sure: this kid has had far more than his share of horrible luck...
    and at this point it would be a minor miracle if he were to completely overcome it...
  10. FCBolt
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    FCBolt Well-Known Member

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    A bit early to say the Chargers are going in the right direction. I hope that writer is right, but the proof is in the pudding.
  11. Blue Bolt
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    Blue Bolt Persona Non Grata

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    And Fat Willie knows pudding. ;)
  12. Riff Raff
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    Apparently you really are what you eat.
  13. Blue Bolt
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    Blue Bolt Persona Non Grata

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    [​IMG]
  14. Riff Raff
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    Did he eat Jabba the Hut? Or would that be cannibalism?
    • Funny Funny x 1

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