The Chargers have reached a familiar destination: dysfunction junction.
Maybe by this time next week, Chargers fans won’t dither about their dismal franchise. Won’t give a hoot about a squad that prevailed in but four games this season, none of which came at the expense of a plus-.500 record team.
The Chargers couldn’t win at home — 3-5.
The Chargers couldn’t win on the road — 1-7
The Chargers couldn’t win in the AFC West — 0-6.
The Chargers can’t win for losing, then again, maybe that is their grand plan.
The NFL figures to show its cards soon, whether the Chargers, Rams and/or Raiders are headed to Los Angeles. Maybe no one goes to Tinsel Town; maybe just the Chargers.
Maybe nobody knows what in the blazes is happening.
But there’s little doubt the Chargers are the opposite of hot. That’s on the field, off the field and are we leaving any fields out?
When word came Monday that coach Mike McCoy was staying, few blinked. Never mind his fingerprints are on a bunch that lost 15 of its past 20 games.
Instead of being bold, the Chargers went status quo.
Or is that status woe?
Under the Spanos family ownership, which started in 1984, the Chargers have 12 winning seasons.
But don’t be surprised that McCoy is still employed.
This organization fired a coach after going 14-2 (Marty Schottenheimer) and retained one that went 1-15 (Mike Riley).
We can now add McCoy to that list of head-scratching decisions, as his ticket was punched after a last-place finish.
The chorus from the Chargers’ brass was those in uniform played hard and didn’t quit. Please remember these strong men are compensated handsomely to do just that.
Playing hard and not quitting deserves an orange slice at halftime in Pop Warner.
It doesn’t mean squat in the big, bad NFL.
And not quitting? We guess the Chargers brass missed that 33-3 blasting at the hands of the visiting Chiefs. Or when the Chargers mailed it in at home against the Raiders, falling behind 37-6.
So McCoy is back and he was loving it when meeting with the press. With all the happy talk ricocheting around the Chargers media trailer, one was tempted to recheck the standings.
While perched behind the podium, McCoy said no decision had been made regarding his coaching staff.
He then exited, went back upstairs, and canned six assistant coaches.
McCoy had the blessing of general manager Tom Telesco, he of the secret contract extension in August.
Overseeing all of this is John Spanos, as he gains more control in trying to lift this bunch from being among the NFL dregs.
Good luck with that even with the third overall pick in next spring’s draft.
There’s no guarantee Telesco will be terrific when the Chargers are on the clock. One doesn’t need a watch to know it’s time Telesco found production with his first-round pick.
In his initial draft, Telesco snagged D.J. Fluker. At best, Fluker is an average offensive lineman.
In his second go-around, Telesco selected cornerback Jason Verrett. He has talent and it’s equally clear Verrett’s slight body will consistently be challenged by 16-game seasons.
Last year brought running back Melvin Gordon and his next touchdown will be his first.
Not exactly three swings and misses.
Not exactly three solid contacts, either.
So the Chargers set sail for the offseason, not knowing where they’ll find anchor when it finishes.
But for starters, they reached the conclusion McCoy is the right man at the right time.
The real McCoy? It’s revealed by his record of 23-27.
Contact Jay Paris at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at jparis_sports.
Sportswriter Jay Paris has written his “Sports Talk” column since joining the Coast News in 2013.
Paris, a Cardiff resident, is a longtime Southern California writer, getting his start with the Orange County Register before coming to San Diego in 1992 to cover the Chargers.
He had the Chargers beat for more than two decades with Oceanside Blade-Citizen, the North County Times and the San Diego Union-Tribune, before being named a sports columnist with the San Diego Union-Tribune.
Paris has won numerous awards voted on by his peers in the Pro Football Writers of America. He has also been a staple on countless media platforms, everything from the KPBS to MLB Network and various radio outlets.
Paris is also the author of three books, with his latest one being, “Shohei Ohtani: The Amazing Story Of Baseball’s Two-Way Japanese Superstar.” He has also written “Game Of My Life Chargers” and “Game Of My Life Rams.”
He currently covers the NFL in Los Angeles for Forbes. com and is a contributor to USA Today Sports Weekly. Follow Jay on Twitter @jparis_sports