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Chargers Keep Turner And Smith Despite Dismal Seasons


San Diego Chargers head coach Norv Turner and general manager A.J. Smith aren't going anywhere. Chargers President Dean Spanos has decided to keep both. And not all the fans are happy about it.

The general manager and head coach kept their jobs despite the team missing the playoffs for the second straight season.

Dean Spanos made the decision two days after the Chargers finished 8-8 by beating Oakland and keeping the Raiders out of the playoffs. North County Times sports columnist Jay Paris said Spanos' decision to keep both Turner and Smith surprised nearly everyone.

"Deano (Spanos) saw the support he had from the key players, he felt continuity was the best way to go," said Paris. "And fans will say 'look, we've had one playoff win in four seasons with these two guys why should we expect anything different?' That will be determined next season."

General Manager A.J. Smith has come under fire for the erosion of talent from a roster which at one time was considered among the NFL's best.

"The past two years the Chargers have been dead-flat average and they're really kind of a second-tier team in a third tier division," said Paris. "The AFC West is one of the worst divisions in the National Football League. And if you can't even advance from there to get to the playoffs, to get to that chance to try to bring that elusive first world championship, NFL-wise, to San Diego, that really makes you scratch your head."

Team President Spanos said Smith is the best person to improve the team and along with head coach Turner, gives the Chargers the best chance to get back to the playoffs.

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