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Norv Turner on newly acquired Meachem: “He’s a No. 1 receiver”

Marques Colston

New Orleans Saints wide receiver Robert Meachem (17) cuts past Detroit Lions cornerback Eric Wright (21) on a touchdown pass play during the second quarter of an NFL football game in New Orleans, Sunday, Dec. 4, 2011. (AP Photo/Bill Haber)


The Chargers are paying Robert Meachem like a top-15 NFL receiver. And they expect him to play like one.

He’s a No. 1 receiver,” coach Norv Turner said Wednesday night. “He’s a guy that has big-play ability. He can be a complete receiver.”

The biggest knock on Meachem in New Orleans was that he played more like a one-trick pony deep threat, capable of taking the top off a defense but getting little production over the middle and underneath.

“I think he’s a guy that will get really excited about the system, what we do, and get excited about having Philip [Rivers] throw to him,” Turner added. “I see him as a guy that can really improve in a real short period of time.”

Meachem’s strength in New Orleans was his ability to get vertical in a hurry. He runs a sub-4.4 forty time. But the Chargers will need Meachem to do more than be a straight-line speedster.

They’re paying him $25.9 million over four seasons to be Rivers’ go-to wideout.