Q: What do you think makes Mike McCoy and Tom Telesco the guys who can change things for the Chargers? – Brianna Jamie
A: Excellent question Brianna. There are a number of reasons why I believe they are the right men for the job, but the number one reason is my faith in the hiring committee. Dean Spanos, John Spanos, Ed McGuire and Ron Wolf went through an extensive process, really putting the candidates through the wringer. All the candidates for the position I had a chance to speak with said it was one of the most detailed interviews they ever went through, so we know that no stone was left unturned during the search. McCoy and Telesco beat out a group of very qualified candidates, so I'm confident they have what it takes to improve the team. The two men laid out their foundation for change during their press conferences, but they will dive deeper into more specifics, so make sure you stay tuned into Chargers.com as we will be sitting down with both Telesco and McCoy in the coming weeks.
Q: How much say will McCoy have in personnel decisions? – Petey Mack
A: In the end, Telesco will be the man to pull the trigger on any personnel decisions, but McCoy will have a big say in the matter. Telesco stressed that this is a true partnership and that he will be relying heavily on McCoy’s advice and preferences when it comes to who fits his schemes.
A: Both Telesco and McCoy expressed excitement over getting to work with a quarterback of Rivers’ caliber. I think it's safe to say one of the motivating factors in landing with the Chargers is getting to work with and build an offense around Philip Rivers.
Q: Since we have most of our coaching staff in place, what will be the next step in the offseason process? – Tyler Dawson
A: The first order of business is the Senior Bowl. Telesco, McCoy and the majority of the scouts will spend the week in Mobile, Alabama evaluating those participating. The Senior Bowl essentially kicks off an important few months leading up to the NFL draft. The Bolts brass will get a chance to see some of the top seniors in college football at practice all week long, so it’s an important event. The next major event is the Scouting Combine in Indianapolis which is an even more detailed, intense week of scouting. During this time period, Telesco and McCoy will also be paying close attention toward evaluating the current players on the team. March 9 kicks off free agency, so you can expect some moves around then to bolster the roster. After that the next major event is the NFL draft kicking off on April 25.
Q: Please tell me we will see big changes to the offensive line! It’s no secret they were the downfall for us last year. – Tyler Hassel
A: The number one question I got this week from you guys was about the offensive line. That exact question about the unit was asked to McCoy during his fan forum with season ticket holders. McCoy’s answer is that front office will sit down and evaluate who is here and what free agents are available to see how we can improve it. But he also stressed that that will be the process for every position group, not just the offensive line.
Q: Hi Ricky, thanks for the mailbag. It's great insight into the team. My biggest disappointment in Tom Telesco's press conference was the intimation that the team will not be active in free agency. He did say they will use free agency, but I was disappointed to hear the team will not be aggressive this year. I think with so many expiring contracts and so many needs, the team can't feasibly rely on a bunch of rookie draft picks and street free agents. – Jimmy D.
A: First off, thanks for the kind words Jimmy. It’s much appreciated. Now to alleviate any worries you may have, trust me when I say Telesco will use all avenues possible to improve the team. If that means free agency, then he will go that route. What Telesco meant was that his preference is to build homegrown talent through the draft, and he experienced great success being part of an Indianapolis Colts front office that did just that. But come March, if a free agent makes sense at a position of need, Telesco will certainly make the move to sign him.
Q: Will Coach McCoy be calling the plays or the OC? – Herb Sutton
A: A few people asked me if McCoy will be calling the plays. The answer is no. McCoy reiterated numerous times during his first week on the job that Offensive Coordinator Ken Whisenhunt will be calling the plays. That being said, McCoy’s fingerprints will be on the offense as he plans to be heavily involved in installing the offensive game plan each week.
Q: What one player do you see benefiting the most from McCoy and Whisenhunt? – Albert Craig
A: That’s an easy one. It’s also the most obvious answer – Philip Rivers. McCoy has brought the best out of all the quarterbacks he’s been with, coaxing career years out of various types of QBs such as Jake Delhomme, Kyle Orton and Tim Tebow. Peyton Manning even experienced the second best statistical year of his storied career during his lone season with McCoy. Meanwhile, Whisenhunt has had success with prolific passers including Ben Roethlisberger and Kurt Warner. I’m very excited to see what these two will do with Rivers in 2013.