The team ended up keeping both of them. We don't know how much internal debate went into that decision, but A.G. Spanos, the Chargers' executive vice president and CEO, made it sound like a no-brainer.
"Well, I think it was an easier decision once you looked at both of their track records," Spanos told NFL.com and NFL Network's Ian Rapoport on Sunday at Chargers training camp. "Our offense has never been more prolific under Norv Turner in any time in team history.
"And you look at A.J.'s time here, and it's the winningest period in Chargers history," Spanos went on. "I think only three teams have more wins throughout his tenure. When you look at the success they've had, it was hard not to continue that."
Spanos' overall message checks out. The Chargers' offense, despite some blips last season, can always be counted on to put up points. As for Smith, there's something to be said for the Chargers not having a losing season since 2003.
Turner and Smith both got the rope to turn things around in 2012. Don't expect it to be there if the Chargers miss the playoffs again.