Norv Turner was hired by the Chargers in February 2007. The appointment was some what of a surprise as Turner had been disappointing as head coach of the Raiders a few years back and was fired two years into his job. Turner is renowned as one of the best offensive minds in the game and transformed the Dallas Cowboys offense of the late 1900s from last in the league to 9th the next year. He was considered one of the main reasons for Dallas' back to back superbowl victories and has been similarly impressive for the Chargers' offense. Last year however, Turner disappointed yet again as head coach with a very talented squad. He and probably AJ Smith are on their final chance and must succeed this year to keep their jobs. The question is: How well does he need to do to keep his title as head coach?
Firstly the Chargers need to achieve a winning season. After finishing 8-8 last season alongside Denver and Oakland, the Chargers will have to improve on this record. With Denver acquiring Peyton Manning and the Chiefs looking stronger than last year the Chargers will need a winning season to reach the top of the AFC West. AJ Smith added key components mainly on defence to help the Chargers out in the offseason and should hopefully help give Rivers the ball more often. It's really now all down to Turner to get out there and win some games!
If the Chargers get to the post season lets say on a 10-6 or 9-7 record it is simply not good enough to go out in their first playoff game, especially if it's one of the wildcard games. San Diego fans are bursting to see a deep postseason run and I think Turner needs to get the Chargers to the AFC Championship game to truly earn his right to stay in San Diego for another year. This is a difficult task with many tough teams in the AFC, but Charger fans need to see some proper success from Turner's Chargers as the likes of Antonio Gates, Philip Rivers and Shaun Phillips wont last forever. Luckily, many of the Free Agent acquisitions who were brought in know what it is like to be in a successful playoff team. The likes of Robert Meacham from the Saints and Jarrett Johnson from the Ravens should provide key knowledge and understanding in what it takes to win big games.
Putting all other things to a side, all Turner really needs to do is get a superbowl victory. If he scrapes into the playoffs at 8-8 and makes a run similar to that of the Giants or Packers of previous years he will be the hero of San Diego. Nobody will care how he did it or whether he deserved it, they just want that trophy! If it requires luck or making some unpopular decisions it doesn't matter, all that matters is getting the Chargers franchise that trophy they have prayed for for so many years.