Approval Rating: A.J. Smith

July 26, 2012; San Diego, CA, USA; San Diego Chargers general manager A.J. Smith (center) watches practice during training camp at Charger Park. Mandatory Credit: Jake Roth-US PRESSWIRE

Within the last 5-or-so years, A.J. Smith has become a polarizing figure in the Chargers organization. Maybe not as polarizing as say, Norv Turner, (we'll get to Norv later) but he has had his fair share of critics and supporters over the years.

Where do you stand? Are you an A.J Smith supporter? Detractor? Indifferent? We all have our reasons for feeling the way we do, and now is your chance to voice your support or concern about the San Diego Chargers General Manager.

I have my opinions, but I'm not going to sway you one way or another; I'm just going to present the facts to you, and leave it up to you to vote your own way.

A.J. Smith's primary job is to be the team's Personnel Director. Yes, his job title is "General Manager", but it's his job to find and sign players and put what he thinks is a winning team on the field. He gets the players together and hands them to Norv Turner's coaching staff to work.

Following the 2011 season where the Chargers failed to secure a playoff berth for the second consecutive year, it seemed all but certain A.J. Smith and Norv Turner would be given their walking papers. That obviously did not happen. After Dean Spanos announced he would be retaining A.J. Smith, A.J. assured everyone through the media that he knows he has not been performing at his job, and that he needs to shape up.

Throughout the offseason, A.J. picked up a number of free agents, a move very uncharacteristic for him considering the team's propensity to build through the draft. Through the draft and free agency, A.J. recognized the biggest weakness on the Chargers was the defense, and that was evident through his bolstering of the defense through Free Agent pickups and the draft.

In fact, each of the first three players selected in this year's draft were defensive players: LB Melvin Ingram, DT Kendall Reyes, and SS Brandon Taylor.

Continuing to bolster the defense, A.J. and the Chargers signed several defensive free agents: LBs Jarret Johnson and Demorrio Williams, SS Atari Bigby, and DT Aubrayo Franklin.

On the Offensive side of the ball, QB Charlie Whitehurst, WRs Robert Meachem and Eddie Royal, FB Le'Ron McClain, RBs Ronnie Brown and Jackie Battle, OG Rex Hadnot, OT Mario Henderson and TE Dante Rosario were all signed.

There were a few notable Free Agent departures: WR Vincent Jackson, who signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers; RB Mike Tolbert took less money to play closer to home with the Carolina Panthers; SS Steve Gregory left for the New England Patriots.

Some key players were retained: DT Antonio Garay was given a two-year contract, OT Jared Gaither was given a four-year deal, and C Nick Hardwick was given a three-year deal.

You're able to vote however you'd like, there are no rules as to what reasoning you have to use to come up with your vote. You have your reasons you feel the way you do, and we want to hear what you have to say. So after you vote, feel free to post in the comments why you feel the way you do.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Bolts From The Blue

You must be a member of Bolts From The Blue to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Bolts From The Blue. You should read them.

Join Bolts From The Blue

You must be a member of Bolts From The Blue to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Bolts From The Blue. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9341_tracker