Chargers 2010 Season Expectations
- Acee is surprised by the national media picking the Chargers to win the Super Bowl this year. If you only paid attention only to local media this year, you'd think the Chargers didn't have a chance.
- He's is a big fan of the Football Outsiders Almanac, and is surprised at how down on the Chargers they are this year. He wonders if maybe they are upset because FBO said the Chargers would be crazy good last year, like the 2007 Patriots, and then flamed out in the playoffs. So now FBO is just bitter.
- ESPN The Magazine ran something like 10,000 simulations, with the most-likely result being 9 wins for the Chargers. Acee takes exception with their analysis that said, "[the team's] run defense could suffer with the departure of Jamal Williams". He points out that Jamal didn't play at all last year, so it makes their analysis quite suspect.
- A lot of people are handing the Chargers the AFC West crown merely by default because of how bad the division historically has been.
- Acee has zero concerns or questions of this team's offense, in spite of McNeill and Jackson's absences. The defense has the potential to be a lot better, but a lot of that remains to be seen.
- He questions the ability of the defense to generate an outside pass rush. Also, he wonders about the ability of the inside to hold offenses back, both along the line and the linebackers.
- The secondary has improved quite a bit in the pre-season, but wonders if that can hold up if there's no pressure up front.
- Acee has the team going 11-5 this year. He expects the winning streak against the Raiders to end this year, but the Chargers do have an easy schedule so he can't see more than 5 losses.
- Don't put too much stock in the loss of Vincent Jackson. Say what you will about Norv Turner as a head coach, the guy knows how to move the ball down the field. Philip Rivers is a very good quarterback, and not every team in the league can handle losing Vincent Jackson, but this team has plenty of weapons and the offense will be fine.
- Ryan Mathews brings a whole new dimension to this offense that hasn't been here since at least 2007. But not just him alone improves the offense, the rest of the offense around him has gotten better.
- Acee expects Mathews to get 240-260 carries this year, and over 1,100 yards.
- Shawne Merriman is expected to play on Monday, and we should know by Friday. Don't be surprised though if he doesn't, but at this time he's expected to play against the Kansas City Chiefs. His workload has apparently increased and he is doing more each day, but he is still wearing the boot after practice as a precaution.
- Editor's Note: Since this interview aired, Merriman has begun practicing with the team.
- The team may be trying to protect him. They don't want a situation like last year where he practices one day a week and has to rest the other days. They want him to come back and be 100% healthy.
- If Merriman doesn't go, Larry English will get the start.
- Acee is *very* excited to see Antwan Applewhite. Not comparing him to Merriman of 2005-2007, but Applewhite is a guy who has kept ascending. Expect Applewhite to get a lot of playing time this year. Expect to even see some 5-linebacker sets this year.
- When asked if the rotation at the defensive line is something the Chargers like to do or it's something they have to do, Acee just begins to laugh. He says Ron Rivera may say they do it because they want to, but of course they want to, because they have to.
- Say, for instance, Antonio Garay came in and was a stout Nose Tackle and could go most the game and stuff the line. The team would absolutely stick with him as the nose tackle and abandon the rotation. Same could apply to Cam Thomas.
- If they don't go with one guy all the time, it's because that player just can't get it done consistently.
- No one said the Chargers had a great defensive line last year. What guys along the defensive line did do was maximize their potential. Every guy on the line played as good as he could given the circumstances. That's why they improved greatly in the last half of the season.
- No one knows the truth on why Vincent Jackson hasn't been traded yet. Conflicting reports say the Chargers are asking for too much compensation, while others say it's Jackson who's asking for too much money. Acee doesn't even know what's going on.
- There was a third team, we know it's in the NFC, that seemed to have reached an agreement to pay Jackson a one-year contract worth $7 million plus incentives. Acee believes the Chargers never told that NFC team in question what the Chargers wanted in return, or the team offered compensation to the Chargers and they said, "no thanks."
- Acee posted a blog that basically says, "get Jackson traded, now." We all know the story that Jackson is suspended for a potential 6 games. There is an arbitrator that basically acts as a buffer between the union and the league that is expected to rule next week whether or not Vincent's 3-game suspension for being placed on the Roster Exempt list will remain in place if he's traded. So essentially, he will decide whether or not Jackson is suspended for 6 games or for 3 games after he's traded.
- The fact of the matter is Vincent Jackson will never be a Charger, ever again.
- Darren brought up the PFT article about Vincent Jackson's agents demanding a retraction from Kevin Acee and the Union-Tribune, and a defamation lawsuit is . Acee says reality is they've requested a retraction and apology, and a defamation lawsuit is possible. The Union-Tribune has not responded to the request, and Acee is standing by his story. At the advice of his lawyers, he can't say much more than that.
- The heart of Acee's job is to build relationships, and the heart of those relationships is the truth. Acee will not say anything that isn't true.
- Jackson's agents still trust Acee, and are in fact still calling him and giving him news, even after the retraction request.
- Acee wasn't surprised too much by the Chargers roster cuts last weekend.
- He was a bit sad the team let Curtis Brinkley go.
- The team was never going to go with Jonathan Crompton this year, should anything happen to Rivers and Volek. Acee says Norv would probably put David Binn out there to hand off before Crompton sees the field.
- The Chargers probably surprised even themselves by signing J.T. O'Sullivan this year.
- A lot of people are criticizing the Chargers for signing O'Sullivan, but the fact of the matter is, he's going to be inactive every single Sunday. Having six cornerbacks was ludicrous anyway, so signing O'Sullivan means nothing in the grand scheme of things.