Chargers head coach Norv Turner told reporters yesterday his San Diego squad was “as tough a group of guys as I’ve been around…they’ve responded in every kind of adversity.” Given that these statements came shortly after a 34-24 loss to Tampa Bay, highlighted by Phillip Rivers’ early Xmas present for Leonard Johnson, it was entirely fitting Norv was hit with the followup question, ““In your estimation, if they do respond and they still do play hard but still continue to lose, is that acceptable?”. The San Diego Union Tribune’s Nick Canepa details Turner’s flustered reaction :
Norv’s face went the color of a blood orange, he raised his voice dramatically, and went off like I’ve never seen him go off before. “What do you think? What do you think the answer to that question is? Answer it for me. No, it’s not acceptable. You know the answer to that. Is it acceptable having a blocked punt and an interception for a touchdown? No, it’s not acceptable to play hard and not win, but that’s what happened.”
As he walked past me and gave me a semi-friendly look, I mentioned that whatever was under his collar was a bit hot. He took about five steps toward the locker room and then came back toward me.
“I’m not hot under the collar,” he said, his voice still angry. “You ask a stupid question you should get a stupid (bleeping) answer.”
Well, it really wasn’t a stupid question. If Norv constantly didn’t tell us how hard his guys work, how they overcome adversity, how they’re “mentally and physically tough,” how they respond, maybe, just maybe, it would have qualified as one.