Tom Telesco said, "If a guy can't keep up with our work ethic, he won't be here." Would someone please explain to me why I should have been excited about the possibility of signing Bryant McKinnie as a stop-gap tackle?
We are only a few months removed from a player with poor work ethic, and a lack of self-motivation yet Chargers' fans were insisting we bring in Bryant McKinnie. I am beyond puzzled by this. Did you forget that he arrived at training camp overweight in Minnesota leading to his departure? Oh then I shouldn't have to remind you that he did it again in Baltimore, ultimately costing him his starting job in the regular season? Have we forgotten that he was replaced at Left Tackle by Micheal Oher who is even worse than he is - on the field? Or the fact that the Ravens put an Offensive Guard at Right Tackle instead of simply kicking over Bryant McKinnie? Did this mean nothing to you? I guess it did not.
Every bit of criticism you threw at Jared Gaither should have been thrown at the idea of bringing in a similar cancer. It was not though. Fans actually embraced this. That was the direction we did not need to go in, but to the casual fan, we are only ONE left tackle away from glory. I understand the Chargers roster is thin at the tackle position, but adding a piece that is essentially the same one that left doesn't help this roster nor provide a good example for the young players in the locker room. Would it have helped on the field? Maybe. It is an expensive maybe at that.
I am as skeptical as any fan about starting King Dunlap or Mike Harris at Left Tackle, but with them you know you get the utmost effort regardless of their talent level and/or skill set. I would prefer to go into battle with that. "Hard Work Beats Talent When Talent Doesn't Work Hard." Bryant McKinnie is a massive tackle, and when MOTIVATED he can be as talented as any tackle outside of Joe Staley. The problem is the need to motivate him since he obviously can't motivate himself. Finding the best five guys is what Telesco is after. I understand this, but the San Diego Chargers coaching staff do not have the time for uncertainties. They need to know who can play and who is going to play throughout the entire year on the same page.
During the Baltimore Ravens' Super Bowl run last season, McKinnie found himself and was very instrumental in their victory. I'll give him that. His motivation, though, was the Lombardi Trophy. Playoff standouts often find themselves becoming rich men the following year, and this too could've been a motivating factor for him. This falls right in line with Jared Gaither. He, too, had a very important stretch to perform to the best of his ability and did it. He got rewarded for it, and we never saw that player, who ended that season well, again.
Either way, the San Diego Chargers are not in a position to make a Super Bowl run nor are they even considered a playoff team for the 2013 campaign. So, if the Chargers aren't winning in the way the Ravens are and have been, what player would they have gotten? I guess Tom Telesco was right after all.