Hard Loss To Swallow

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#GoIrish #Aztecs #SDGulls #Raiders #THFC #RipCity
Staff member
Jun 20, 2005
Chula Vista, CA

“Obviously this was a very, very disappointing outcome to this football game,” Chargers Head Coach Marty Schottenheimer said. “It just continues to illustration what the National Football League is all about and why it is so popular. Anytime you go line up and play you can win or lose. Unfortunately, we experienced the latter today.”

The Bolts opened up a 7-3 lead in the first half on Drew Brees’ eight-yard touchdown pass to Keenan McCardell. But two touchdown catches by Dolphins wide receiver Chris Chambers helped Miami score 17-unanswered points to put the Chargers in a 20-7 hole.

To their own admission, the Chargers came out a bit flat in the opening half Sunday and were never able to recover.

“The rhythm and tempo just weren’t where they needed to be,” running back LaDainian Tomlinson said. “I don’t know what it was. You have to earn every win that you get in this league. We came out in the first half and were just going through the motions. It caught up to us.”

After falling behind, the Bolts made a valiant effort to get back in it. Following Chambers’ second score, Brees led his team 73 yards down the field and closed the gap to six points with a four-yard touchdown run.

On the ensuing drive, Dolphins quarterback Gus Frerotte completed a 56-yard pass to Marty Booker on 3rd-and-9 to move the ball to the Chargers’ nine yard line, but the NFL’s top-ranked run defense flexed their muscle when it counted most. The Bolts stuffed Miami running back Ronnie Brown on three consecutive plays and caused him to fumble on the final run. Safety Clinton Hart recovered at his own one yard line to keep the Chargers alive.

“We were determined to keep them out of there,” linebacker Shawne Merriman said. “There was no way we were going to let them run it in on us. We came up with a big play that gave us another chance.”

The ensuing drive included a 17-yard reception by Eric Parker on 3rd-and-17 and a one-yard plunge by fullback Lorenzo Neal to give the Chargers a key first down. But moments later, Dolphins safety Yerimiah Bell hit Brees from his blindside and forced him to fumble. Miami took over at the San Diego 23 yard line.

After holding the Dolphins to a field goal, the Chargers still had a shot. Brees threw an eight-yard touchdown pass to tight end Antonio Gates with 15 seconds remaining in the game to make it a two-point contest.

Unfortunately, Mike Scifres’ onside kick attempt fell in the arms of Dolphins tight end Randy McMichael to seal the Miami victory.

The Chargers run defense turned in yet another impressive showing Sunday. The Bolts gave up just seven yards on the ground in the first half and held Miami to 71 rushing yards on the day. The Dolphins averaged just 2.7 yards per carry.

Schottenheimer warned his team in recent weeks that falling on the short end of the turnover battle was going to catch up with his team. The Chargers lost two fumbles and were also intercepted Sunday.

“You just can’t give the ball away like that and expect to win,” Schottenheimer said. “We’ve talked about it before. It got us today. We have to do a better job of taking care of the football.”

Offensively, the Chargers were led by Gates, who caught a career-high 13 passes for 123 yards to go with his touchdown. McCardell contributed seven catches for 58 yards and tied his single-season career high with his eight touchdown grab of the season. Tomlinson finished the day with 75 yards on 21 carries, while Brees set career highs in attempts and completions. He finished 35-of-52 passing for 279 yards and two touchdowns.

With three weeks remaining in the NFL’s regular season, the Chargers continue to find themselves in the middle of an interesting AFC playoff race. They’ll now prepare for a showdown with the 13-0 Indianapolis Colts.

“The objective is simple,” Schottenheimer said. “We’ve got three to go and we need to win three. We’ll continue to approach them one at a time and see where we are at the end. All we can focus on is the objective in front of us. That’s to prepare for a very talented Colts team.”


Oct 14, 2005
Bad playcalling, no sacks, bad seconday coverage, too many turnovers. Everything went bad for us yesterday. We lose 1 more game and were out of the playoffs. :(