I'm calling an audible this week. Instead of the San Diego Chargers game ball going to the best player of the week, I'm giving it to the Bolts' Head Coach: Norv Turner.
In an odd little stat, so odd that I fell in love with it, the Chargers had started every year under Norv Turner 2-3. Strength of schedule didn't matter, nor did early or late bye weeks. The Chargers could be playing the Seahawks 5 times or the Patriots 5 times, I was certain that after 5 weeks of Chargers football we could rely on San Diego's record to be 2-3.
Well, here San Diego sits at 3-1 heading into Week 5. The odd little stat is now an impossibility, and with the 1-4 Broncos as the next opponent the Chargers have an actual shot at a "fast start" to the season under Norv.
When, exactly, was the last time a Norv Turner team started 3-1? The answer is the 1999 Washington Redskins, led by Brad Johnson and Stephen Davis on offense, who went on to finished 10-6 and win the always-tough NFC East division. That 1999 team went on to win a playoff game as well.
Norv was fired from his Head Coaching position with the Redskins the following season. New Owner Dan Snyder was not a fan of Turner's and jumped on the first opportunity to let him go, when the team lost 4 out of 5 games and sunk to 7-6. Norv would eventually be replaced by Marty Schottenheimer.
Congrats, Norv. All the odd changes you made in training camp and the preseason seem to be paying off. The team might not seem to be playing much better than in years passed, but games they used to lose late are not being won late.