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Old 01-07-2010, 03:53 PM   #1
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Default Hell just froze over: Norv Turner, Coach of the year!

It wasn't that long ago when McDaniels had this locked up.

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Norv Turner wins USA TODAY's top coach after Chargers' surge

Four months after saying his Chargers weren't as good as fans thought they would be, San Diego coach Norv Turner has won USA TODAY's NFL Coach of the Year award.

Turner led the Chargers back from a 2-3 start with 11 straight victories that earned his team a playoff bye. The Chargers, at 13-3, finished just one game behind the Colts for the best record in the NFL.

Turner has led the Chargers to the playoffs in all three of his seasons in San Diego, but said that this year has been his most rewarding.

"I'm not very good at comparing those things, but the biggest thing for me is the job the assistant coaches have done and the number of people we have that have contributed to this team," Turner said. "That part of it is impressive."

Turner received 23 of 66 points from the 11-member panel of USA TODAY football writers and editors. He earned five first-place votes, and edged out Cincinnati coach Marvin Lewis (who had four first-place votes) by three points.

The Chargers and Turner were a late arrival into the race for postseason awards. They started 2-3 and were 3 games behind the Denver Broncos after a home loss to them on Oct. 19.

Many analysts suggested the Chargers were Super Bowl contenders in the preseason. But Turner sent a jolt to his team in December after a Week 2 loss to the Ravens, after a close-call win in the opener at Oakland.

"I don't think right now we're as good as you that cover us think or expect us to be; I don't think we're as good as what our fans want us to be," Turner said. "But I believe we can get there. We've got a lot of work to get there."

His premonition was tested with two losses in the next three games, but the Chargers wouldn't lose another game after their Week 6 defeat to Denver. The Broncos' tailspin eliminated first-half favorite Josh McDaniels from top coach honors. And the late-season slips by the Indianapolis Colts and New Orleans Saints (who combined to lose their last five games after each opening the season 14-0 and 13-0, respectively) helped distinguish the Chargers' surge.

Turner led his team to impressive fourth-quarter comeback victories on the road against the New York Giants and Dallas Cowboys and a Week 15 win against the Cincinnati Bengals that helped solidify a playoff bye.

Winning Coach of the Year honors does not guarantee Turner postseason success, however. Turner still has yet to reach the elite level of NFL coaches who have hoisted the Lombardi Trophy.

That remains an obstacle for him. He has a 4-3 record in postseason play and has never reached the Super Bowl. It's a threshold that the Chargers, who have been to the playoffs in five of the past six years, are hoping to cross.

Lewis' second-place finish is a testament to the turnaround he led in Cincinnati, where the Bengals clinched the AFC North with their first winning record in four years and just their second playoff berth since 1990. He coached the Bengals through the loss of Vikki Zimmer, the wife of defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer, and the death of receiver Chris Henry in December.

Caldwell, the third-place finisher, seemed to be cruising to the award when his Colts became just the third team to start a season 14-0. But the controversy surrounding the Colts lifting their starters in the two losses helped douse his candidacy.

Complete voting results:

Norv Turner, San Diego: 23 points (five first-place votes)

Marvin Lewis, Cincinnati: 20 points, (four first-place votes)

Jim Caldwell, Indianapolis: 11 points

Sean Payton, New Orleans: 6 points (one first-place vote)

Mike McCarthy, Green Bay: 3 points (one first-place vote)

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Old 01-07-2010, 03:55 PM   #2
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I appreciate Norv having the kind of regular season that he had. Had he screwed up during the season, Shanahan might be in SD now.
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Old 01-07-2010, 03:56 PM   #3
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They should lock him up right now as coach for life. Come on SD, do it!
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Old 01-07-2010, 03:58 PM   #4
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Four more years! Four more years!
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Old 01-07-2010, 04:02 PM   #5
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I appreciate Norv having the kind of regular season that he had. Had he screwed up during the season, Shanahan might be in SD now.
funny people still feel the need to bag on norv especially after the last few seasons hes had. he took them to AFCC game last year, had like a 10 or 11 game winning streak this year. when will jokes stop about this team that is vastly better than ours in every way?
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Old 01-07-2010, 04:04 PM   #6
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Where you at Baja you owe me 10 bucks!!!!
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Old 01-07-2010, 04:07 PM   #7
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funny people still feel the need to bag on norv especially after the last few seasons hes had. he took them to AFCC game last year, had like a 10 or 11 game winning streak this year. when will jokes stop about this team that is vastly better than ours in every way?
The Chargers flummoxed me greatly this year. They could neither stop the run, nor run the ball, yet week in and week out, teams (including us, ugggh) insisted on getting into aerial shootouts with them that they couldn't possibly win. I've thought for a long time now that you can't go deep into the playoffs if you can't do either of those things, but ****...if no one's caught on yet, good for Norv.
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Old 01-07-2010, 04:14 PM   #8
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Coach for life I hope.
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Old 01-07-2010, 04:20 PM   #9
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The Chargers flummoxed me greatly this year. They could neither stop the run, nor run the ball, yet week in and week out, teams (including us, ugggh) insisted on getting into aerial shootouts with them that they couldn't possibly win. I've thought for a long time now that you can't go deep into the playoffs if you can't do either of those things, but ****...if no one's caught on yet, good for Norv.
This is one (slight) concern I have with the Chargers going into the playoffs because I did notice it against the Giants and Cowboys, where they went away from the run in a close game. People are used to the Chargers having a good run defense and a poor pass defense but this year it has flip-flopped. The secondary is playing about as good as I can remember in the past few years.

In general though, the Chargers often go up a couple of scores and force their opponents to become one dimensional. As long as their offense can keep putting up points, teams will have to go away from the run to keep up.

Norv totally deserves this award. People still have this perception of him as a failure because of his time in Washington and Oakland but to be honest, he really didn't have much of a chance to succeed in those places. Everyone who has followed in his footsteps in those locations haven't fared any better.

Even though he was taking over a 14-2 team, he still needed time to get his staff and players who fit what he wants to do. It took a couple of years, as it normally does and he's got the team performing like a well oiled machine.
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Old 01-07-2010, 04:21 PM   #10
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Four more years! Four more years!
Be careful what you wish for!
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Old 01-07-2010, 04:24 PM   #11
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Be careful what you wish for!
Bah! BAH!

I'm curious why more people don't try the double A gap blitz over and over against Rivers either. It's the only thing that kept us in the win over SD.
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Old 01-07-2010, 04:27 PM   #12
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Yawn
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Old 01-07-2010, 04:29 PM   #13
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Bah! BAH!

I'm curious why more people don't try the double A gap blitz over and over against Rivers either. It's the only thing that kept us in the win over SD.
You would have a hard time living off that blitz. One half is about all the mileage you are going to get out of that call.
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Old 01-07-2010, 04:32 PM   #14
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Bah! BAH!

I'm curious why more people don't try the double A gap blitz over and over against Rivers either. It's the only thing that kept us in the win over SD.
Teams are still trying it.

Two things happened:

Norv started calling more quick passes.

And the play of the o-line improved. Vasquez (rookie) and Mruczkowski (first time starter) got better as the season went on. And now Hardwick is back, which is even better.
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Old 01-07-2010, 04:54 PM   #15
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I have been on record for a long time stating that SD will win the super bowl this time.

I hate SD, I hate their fair weather bandwagon fans, but that doesn't change the fact that they have been a great team for several seasons, have had unlucky injuries and some unlucky bounces in the playoffs recently, and baring something similar will have a Lombardi in around 5 weeks.
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Old 01-07-2010, 04:56 PM   #16
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How Marvin Lewis didn't get coach of the year is beyond me. He coaches the bengals to a playoff berth. THE BENGALS. Not to mention all the tragedy on that team - and the fact he turned Cedric Benson (CEDRIC BENSON!) into a star RB.

Look at the talent on the Chargers. Jim Zord could've coached that team to the playoffs.
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Old 01-07-2010, 05:05 PM   #17
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I have been on record for a long time stating that SD will win the super bowl this time.

I hate SD, I hate their fair weather bandwagon fans, but that doesn't change the fact that they have been a great team for several seasons, have had unlucky injuries and some unlucky bounces in the playoffs recently, and baring something similar will have a Lombardi in around 5 weeks.
I'm hoping the window will close on them soon
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Old 01-07-2010, 05:10 PM   #18
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Congrats, but they better get to the big dance soon because the window will soon close.

I almost hope they win it this year so we wont have to hear anymore excuses.

On the radio they want more respect, they want to know why they are getting it.

How about winning it one time or two before that happens.
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Old 01-07-2010, 05:15 PM   #19
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Damn that window is sure stubborn! I've been hearing it should be closing for three years now!
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Old 01-07-2010, 05:17 PM   #20
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Be careful what you wish for!
No Shyt we haven't fared so well lately
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Old 01-07-2010, 05:18 PM   #21
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Damn that window is sure stubborn! I've been hearing it should be closing for three years now!
They have time with the core they have now.

They just need to get pass the Colts.
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Old 01-07-2010, 05:53 PM   #22
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They have time with the core they have now.

They just need to get pass the Colts.
Too bad for them this is the best Colts team of the decade. They have a real, honest to God, solid defense. It's not just the Bob Sanders and Peyton Manning show.
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Old 01-07-2010, 06:24 PM   #23
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Damn that window is sure stubborn! I've been hearing it should be closing for three years now!
Kind of like hearing how SD will win the SB the last three years.

If they don't get there this year, what will the excuse be this time??
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Old 01-07-2010, 06:31 PM   #24
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Too bad for them this is the best Colts team of the decade. They have a real, honest to God, solid defense. It's not just the Bob Sanders and Peyton Manning show.
I think it comes down to San Diego's defensive line.

Injuries and all that, with the Colts offensive line, can they get to Manning?

I think that's what it really come down too.
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Old 01-07-2010, 06:42 PM   #25
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funny people still feel the need to bag on norv especially after the last few seasons hes had. he took them to AFCC game last year, had like a 10 or 11 game winning streak this year. when will jokes stop about this team that is vastly better than ours in every way?
Yes, that team is vastly superior to ours in talent. If Shanahan had been there during Norv's term, they'd have a ring or 2 by now.
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