Wrath of Marty: Coach gives Chargers tongue-lashing
SAN DIEGO -- Mount Marty erupted on Wednesday, hurling profanities over the assembled San Diego Chargers.
Coach Marty Schottenheimer was steamed about his team's practice and he let his players have it during a spirited dressing-down.
"Let's just say this -- it wasn't nearly as good as a week ago on the same day," Schottenheimer told the media a few minutes later.
The Chargers are coming off a big 23-13 win over the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday night that boosted them to 3-1 and a share of the AFC West lead with Denver.
"I've always said the most important practice of the week is Thursday," Schottenheimer said. "On Wednesday, what happens is you're putting in a new plan, and you've got some things that are a little bit different, maybe some subtle changes so the players are working through that.
"But that notwithstanding, a week ago, we had the best Wednesday practice we've had all year. We just didn't have the kind of execution we need."
By Schottenheimer's standards, it was a pretty good blowup.
"Most people always know how I feel," he said.
The Chargers play at San Francisco on Sunday.
"You hope that doesn't happen, but odds are it may happen every now and then and you've got to learn how to deal with it," quarterback Philip Rivers said. "I think we will. We'll take an honest look at it and bounce back tomorrow."
Rivers said the practice "just wasn't crisp. And sometimes Wednesday, everything's not perfect because you've just put in everything, but you still hope everything's clicking. The bottom didn't fall out of it, but it just wasn't clean like you want it to be."
Rivers said Schottenheimer trusts the players and treats them with respect.
"But at the same time, he knows when he's got to grab us by the shirt and say, 'Listen here.' When he does get after us, we appreciate it. It's not just to do it. Some coaches may just bust a fuss. If he addresses something, it's obviously something we need to take a look at it. We already realized it wasn't that good of a day."
Also Wednesday, the Chargers put backup left tackle Leander Jordan on injured reserve due to a stinger sustained in the third exhibition game.
"There just was apparently no way we could reasonably predict when this thing would be resolved to the point that our medical staff was comfortable with it," Schottenheimer said.
Rookie left tackle Marcus McNeill has played well in place of Roman Oben, who missed the second half of last season with a foot injury and was put on the physically-unable-to-perform list before this season.
Oben won't be able to practice with the team until next week. He may practice for a maximum of three weeks before the team must either add him to the active roster or have him finish the season on the reserve list.
But Schottenheimer said he's "very encouraged" with Oben's progress.
McNeill broke a bone in his right hand on Sunday night. Surgery won't be required and he is not expected to miss any practices or the 49ers game, the team said.
McNeill broke a bone in his left hand in the exhibition season. He's started all four regular-season games.
"It's not as bad as the one I had to have surgery on, so I won't even be padded up for the game on Sunday," McNeill said.
The Chargers signed former Browns linebacker Nick Speegle to the active roster and cornerback Gabe Franklin to the practice squad.
Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press
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