He cited a roster full of stars, improved depth that was on show in an injury-depleted 2022 and a training employees he praised for its management and educating capacity.
Still, Tom Telesco is aware of persons are judging him on a document that options simply two playoff victories throughout his decade as Chargers normal supervisor.
“I’m entitled to nothing,” he mentioned Thursday throughout his annual end-of-season information convention. “I don’t take my job for granted at all.”
Telesco, 50, is starting his eleventh yr on the job, his groups going 79-83 in the course of the common season, the playoff wins coming in 2013 and 2018.
The Chargers earned the AFC’s high wild-card spot this season however misplaced Saturday night time in Jacksonville 31-30.
Telesco and his employees have acquired excessive marks for constructing rosters with top-end expertise. Depth has been a difficulty, one which was higher addressed this season. The final two years, he additionally has displayed a capability to assemble an offensive line.
But top-end success on the sector stays elusive. The Chargers haven’t gained a division title since 2009, when Norv Turner was coach and A.J. Smith normal supervisor.
With star quarterback Justin Herbert three seasons into his profession, Telesco continues to face mounting expectations for a franchise that yearly has struggled to meet its prospects.
“There are some positives here,” Telesco mentioned. “Understand that I’m not sitting up here saying I deserve anything. But I like where our roster is headed. I love the coaching staff. … Seeing the passion [from fans], it’s an exciting time here.”
Here are some takeaways from the overall supervisor’s 40-minute session with reporters:
Quarterback can be concerned in hiring course of: Telesco mentioned Herbert may have enter because the Chargers seek for a brand new offensive coordinator following the firing of Joe Lombardi.
“I know that’s what [head coach] Brandon [Staley] thinks,” he mentioned, “and that’s the way I’ve always operated with quarterbacks who’ve kind of earned that.”
Such an association isn’t uncommon within the NFL. Baltimore coach John Harbaugh indicated Thursday that Lamar Jackson can be concerned within the Ravens’ seek for a brand new offensive coordinator.
The Chargers additionally want a brand new quarterbacks coach after letting Shane Day go. The subsequent coordinator would be the third of Herbert’s NFL profession.
Telesco mentioned expertise isn’t essentially a precedence in figuring out Lombardi’s substitute.
Feeling run down: The Chargers’ new offensive coordinator can be tasked with serving to revive a operating sport that too typically floor to a halt this season. The Chargers completed thirtieth in yards dashing per sport.
“We’ll always be a passing team,” Telesco mentioned. “We have Justin Herbert. We like to throw the ball. We’re never going to be a 50/50-balance team of run and pass. But you do have to be able to run the ball efficiently and effectively, especially in the second half of games when you have leads. We were unable to do that this year.”
The Chargers tied for thirtieth in yards per try and completed thirty first in share of performs that had been runs.
Staley defined this week that an improved operating sport will assist with explosive performs. Telesco talked about how the menace to run is important to maximise the impression of play-action.
Cutting Keenan? With considerably much less cap area than final offseason, the Chargers aren’t able to be terribly lively in bolstering their roster.
This time a yr in the past, they had been about to embark on a defensive rebuild that included including free brokers akin to cornerback J.C. Jackson and inside linemen Sebastian Joseph-Day and Austin Johnson.
The Chargers additionally traded for edge rusher Khalil Mack and, later in free company, signed cornerback Bryce Callahan, lineman Morgan Fox and linebacker Kyle Van Noy.
One choice to clear area can be slicing broad receiver Keenan Allen, who has two years remaining on his deal. Telesco was requested if letting Allen go is tempting given the workforce’s cap scenario.
“It’s not tempting to me,” he mentioned. “I mean, good players make money. I’d rather have a lot of good players on our roster than a lot of cap space.”
Tranquill coming again? The Chargers’ record of inner unrestricted free brokers consists of a number of key contributors: Callahan, Fox, Van Noy, proper deal with Trey Pipkins III, linebacker Drue Tranquill, security Nasir Adderley and broad receiver DeAndre Carter.
Last yr, the Chargers allowed linebacker Kyzir White, their main tackler, to depart in free company. Tranquill is in the same spot now, although, in contrast to White, he had the added accountability this season of relaying alerts within the huddle.
“Drue had a tremendous year, as a player, as a leader for us,” Telesco mentioned.
Pipkins impressed the Chargers all through 2022 enjoying regardless of a knee sprain that he battled weekly.
“Really proud of him for a number of reasons,” Telesco mentioned. “His development, really turning into a starting right tackle in this league. And then how he handled his injury. I mean, he is tough. He knew how much he meant to the team. He played through some things that were really difficult.”
High reward for veteran nook: Telesco spoke in glowing phrases of cornerback Michael Davis, who misplaced his beginning job when the Chargers signed Jackson however then returned to the lineup after Jackson suffered a season-ending knee harm.
“He got his opportunity this year and he just played lights out for us,” Telesco mentioned. “Without how we played, I don’t know if we would have had 10 wins.”
Telesco referred to as Davis “a rock-solid player” and famous his psychological toughness.