Bolts’ Offseason Needs A Jolt

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The phone at Chargers Park rang, loud and clear, and that’s a good thing.

Why? There was a belief owner Dean Spanos was pinching pennies with his family plan.

Nope, the familiar voice on the other end was just that.

San Diego Chargers,” receptionist Georgette Rogers said, and if only we could all be as good at our jobs as she is.

But the static-free connection didn’t clear something up: the Chargers do know free agency has started, right?

Seems so, and we didn’t overlook the Chargers retained and others purchased.

Still, the Chargers have more holes today than when their 9-7 season ended.

General manager Tom Telesco is preaching patience, we get it. But does the Chargers’ congregation ever get to rise as one and scream, “Hallelujah”

Wide receiver Stevie Johnson picked the Chargers over the Patriots Tuesday morning, does that count? We guess, but he had two more touchdowns last year than linebacker Andrew Gachkar.

With the big-name free agents off the board — and many would have looked keen in bolts — the Chargers are trolling the second-tier waters. Nothing wrong with that, and there’s also the draft.

But if you feel an offseason buzz about the Chargers, it might just be that pesky fly in the room.

The Chargers, so far, have gone Padres: striking out. Maybe that line of thinking is of the past, but what of the Chargers future?

Scratch that — make that the present.

Quarterback Philip Rivers, the best right arm from Alabama in these parts since Jake Peavy, is 34 before next season ends. Tight end Antonio Gates, 35. Wide receiver Malcom Floyd’s nickname is “M-80″ but his real number starts with a 3 as well, as does safety Eric Weddle’s

Telesco reminds the doubtful he brought back left tackle King Dunlap and cornerback Brandon Flowers. He said they would have been the top free agents at their positions.

Telesco also checks off Denver offensive lineman Orlando Franklin and Baltimore returner Jacoby Jones.

Then Telesco goes silent and you sure we’re still connected?

The Chargers’ spinning door has spun some talent toward the locker room.

But those dang things go both ways and the degree of talent exiting makes a Bolts’ fan head spin: Running back Ryan Mathews, wide receiver Eddie Royal, center Nick Hardwick, linebackers Dwight Freeney, Jaret Johnson and Gachkar, safety Marcus Gilchrist and cornerback Shareece Wright.

We hear Bolt Man remains, but he can’t cover a lick and he’s slow attacking the hole when running the ball.

Meanwhile AFC foes like the Colts are loading up. You know the Patriots never sit still and did the Chiefs really get explosive wide out Jeremy Maclin?

We know, we know: patience. But after wearing seat belts for the Padres’ A.J. Preller’s wild offseason ride, something is amiss.

Maybe Telesco has something up his sleeve and we wonder too what a Rivers-to-Jacksonville-trade will bring.

Just kidding — we hope. But we learned a long time ago to judge an NFL franchise by its deeds, not words.

The Chargers have the look of a team building for a future which might have them playing in Mission Valley or the Los Angeles area. To date, the Chargers have pursued Carson — that’s a city, not a defensive tackle — with more purpose than any player.

Vince Wolfolk, another defensive tackle, came off the board on Monday. He landed with the Texans and Chargers Nation looks at Telesco and screams, “giddy-up!”

Maybe the Chargers are trending the right way. They finished as runner-up in chasing wide receiver Andre Johnson and after consecutive third-place showings in the AFC West, that’s improvement.

But Telesco has so many holes to file on a roster with numerous key components on the back side of 30. An offseason dominated by stadium chatter could use of dose of good news.

Getting Johnson moves the needle — a tad. We just hope if the Chargers are moving, their last season in San Diego is something worth cheering about.

+ Contact Jay Paris at jparis@bcaradio.com

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