Rivera Gets Defensive Coordinator Gig at San Diego

Congratulations to Ron Rivera, who was promoted to defensive coordinator for the San Diego Chargers yesterday, after the firing of Ted Cottrell.

Cottrell was apparently let go by head coach, Norv Turner, even though (1) normally the GM does the hiring and firing, and (2) Cottrell is an old friend of GM A.J. Smith, and (3) Turner is 72-92-1 as a head coach. Something seems weird there.

The article notes that the Chargers’ defense has had problems with “… pressure on the quarterback and a lot of passing yards.”

Sounds somewhat like the Bears, who fired Rivera after the 2006 season, when their defense was still pretty dominant, and replaced him with somebody I never heard of named Bob Babich, who has shown so far that he is less a defensive coordinator than a loyal friend of head coach Lovie Smith. They’ve lost fourth quarter leads in all 3 of their losses, and against the Vikings last game, gave up many long drives without sacking the QB once. If they hadn’t picked off four passes, the Vikings — led by career backup Gus Frerotte — could have scored like 55-60 points, even though they’ve struggled with offense all season.

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