Turner Timeouts Baffle


Week 11 at Chicago. 3:11 left in the game, down 31-20. The most precious commodity for the San Diego Chargers at this moment is time. To this point a variety of juvenile mistakes have been made. The next "slip up" can only be described as, in-explainable. Incredible. Boggling.

After a Matt Forte carry that ended in a "could be" fumble.The Chargers coaching staff now had an opportunity to challenge the play in hopes of a late turnover. Then maybe, just maybe, the lifeless Chargers could be resuscitated. If Norv Turner were a doctor trying to save the 2011 Chargers, he could easily be confused with a Kevorkian. The faint beating of the Chargers heart monitor has fallen silent. A challenge stops the game and the clock. That is a simple, clear fact, that all NFL coaches need to know. A challenge in fact, stops the game for far more time than just a generic "timeout", for the same price. Think of it as bargain shopping. A challenge offers coaches "bang for their buck." This knowledge does not require NFL coaching experience and knowledge; As any avid Madden gamer would know, by challenging a play, not only is the referee required to stop the clock, but he is required to review the play numerous times. This allows for water breaks, scheming sessions, and player-coach meetings. No football fan needs the previous explanation, but does Norv Turner?

The Chicago Bears were not running to the line in hurry up mode in order to snap the ball. Which in other situations may cause a quick timeout to review. There was no urgency, surprise, or unreasonable amounts of pressure to make this decision. A challenge is a time out, and so much more. Yes, the Chargers special teams were poor. Yes, Phillip Rivers had two atrocious interceptions. And yes, Ryan Mathews might as well be the new spokesman for Butterfingers candy bars. All of these things involve not only Norv Turner's actions and decisions, but also a depend on player actions and decisions. The poor play is one thing, and Turner should be held partially if not fully accountable. Coaching blunders like this are not excusable. There is no explanation and it is why teams like the Charger's lose games in the NFL. Don't sweep this mistake under the carpet. This is an all time coaching blunder, regardless if it truly affected the final outcome. As fans we often joke "I could have made a better call than that!" This is a rare situation where quite literally, a fan may have. This is a more than distressing thought.

I am not a Norv Hater. I am not asking for his head on a platter. I just simply ask that Norv Turner, the head coach of the San Diego Chargers challenges plays and calls timeouts, when the situation presents itself to do so.
Is that to much to ask? What are your thoughts on this blunder and how does that impact your thoughts on Norv Turner?

November 21, 2011

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