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Chargers report: Strategy and personnel

Discussion in 'San Diego Chargers Hall of Champions' started by robdog, Jan 18, 2006.

  1. robdog

    robdog Code Monkey Staff Member Administrator

    Jun 29, 2009
    Source: <a href="http://www.sportsline.com/nfl/teams/report/SD/9172195" target="_blank">The Sports XChange</a>

    The Chargers head into the off-season intent on improving their play along the offensive line and in the secondary.

    The running game lost steam, especially in the final month. Too much inconsistency and too many times that Tomlinson was met in the backfield by defenders. Tomlinson is great, but even he needs some room to roam.

    The secondary didn't improve, despite the Chargers nearly doubling their sack total from the previous year - they had 46 sacks. Quentin Jammer and Drayton Florence combined for two interceptions - and they didn't come until December.

    Schottenheimer has won 21 games in the last two years and has some $6 million guaranteed for the next two. People get worked up over Schottenheimer's conservatism and postseason shortcomings, but it's rare a coach that is winning and has big bucks coming his way his shown the door. And that certainly won't be the case here.

    Offensive coordinator Cam Cameron met with the Houston Texans regarding their head-coaching opening, his first interview for such a post. Defensive coordinator Wade Phillips, who is 10 games over .500 as an NFL head coach, was interviewed by the Green Bay Packers.

    If Cameron goes and fired Rams coach Mike Martz isn't hired elsewhere, Martz could considered coming to San Diego, where he attended school and was a junior college coach. Though it remains to be seen if Martz would be interested in working with Schottenheimer, and vice versa.

    Another possibility is Norv Turner, the fired Raiders coach and former Chargers offensive coordinator.

    All the assistants are under contract and are expected to return - although Schottenheimer left himself some wiggle room when asked just that.


    Unrestricted free agents:

    --QB Drew Brees (will be retained, likely with the franchise tag, although there could be a long-term deal).

    --WR Reche Caldwell (isn't expected to be brought back).

    --TE Justin Peelle (team likes his blocking, but at the right price).

    --G Bob Hallen (was able to supply needed depth; could return depending on the draft).

    --DE DeQuincy Scott (solid backup and clubhouse guy; should return).

    --LB Ben Leber (he wants to start, and with Shawne Merriman in place, he won't do it in San Diego).

    --LB Carlos Polk (good special teams player but repeated injuries are a concern).

    --CB Jamar Fletcher (was decent as a nickel back; team looking to upgrade secondary but Fletcher could be a fall-back guy and return).

    Restricted free agents:

    --G Kris Dielman (will return).

    --T Courtney VanBuren (injuries hurt his stock, and team will likely look elsewhere).

    --WR Kassim Osgood (team wants him back for his special teams play).

    --FB Andrew Pinnock (with Pro Bowler Lorenzo Neal on roster, he's not a high priority)

    --DE Jacques Cesaire (team wants to retain him).

    --LB Matt Wilhelm (had a solid season as a backup and team is fond of him).

    --LB Stephen Cooper (will return; thought of as a possible starter, but if Randall Godfrey delays his retirement, Cooper again could be a key backup).

    --S Clinton Hart (at the right price, he returns).

    Among the reasons the Chargers have flipped their persona from losers to playoff contenders is the work of general manager A.J. Smith in the draft. The team has the 19th pick this year, and Smith will likely look to upgrade the offensive line and the wide receiving corps, especially a speed receiver who can stretch the field.

    QB Drew Brees has undergone surgery to repair a torn labrum in his right (throwing) shoulder. He is expected to be ready for the June mini-camp.

    DE Luis Castillo will have arthroscopic knee surgery and isn't expected to miss any of the off-season workouts.

    LB Donnie Edwards will undergo arthroscopic knee surgery.

    WR Kassim Osgood (shoulder) is expected to be fit for the mini-camps.

    LB Carlos Polk (shoulder) will be OK in time for training camp.

    LT Roman Oben (foot) is hopeful of being OK for training camp.

    SS Terrence Kiel (ankle) had surgery and is pointing to the June mini-camp.

    TE Ryan Krause (foot) is expected to be ready for the mini-camp.

    LB Ben Leber (foot) is expected to be ready for mini-camp.

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