NC Times: Chargers postgame

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

By Jay Paris

KEY STAT: 7 - For the second straight week, the point total by the Chargers’ vaunted offense.


When Chargers QB Drew Brees was sacked and lost a fumble at his 1-yard-line late in the second quarter, the Broncos quickly scored to earn a 14-0 lead. Brees also dislocated his right shoulder, which forced a green Philip Rivers to play.


“Drew Brees and Philip Rivers; they both looked the same to me. Neither of them got it done.'’

—- Broncos CB Champ Bailey on the Chargers’ quarterbacks




With zilch to play for, Denver showed the Chargers what a real playoff team looks like.


Chargers’ stretch drive

Losing three of the final four —- including two at home —- isn’t a mark of a good team.


> LB Marques Harris (knee)

> QB Drew Brees (shoulder)

> DE Luis Castillo (knee)


Chargers RB LaDainian Tomlinson confirmed that the team wasn’t forthright in their monthlong assessment of his injury. His bruised ribs are cracked ribs.

“It’s tough when you are playing with ribs that are more than just bruised,'’ said Tomlinson, who rushed for 92 yards, but failed to eclipse 100 for the fifth straight week. “Every time you get hit, you lose your breath. It’s a tough injury to play with.'’

Tomlinson also said the ribs didn’t bother him Saturday and he hopes to play in next month’s Pro Bowl.

“I would unless I trip and fall at home or something,'’ he said.


Chuck Muncie was on hand to watch his Chargers single-season touchdown record be broken by Tomlinson. With his second-quarter, 6-yard run, Tomlinson scored his 20th touchdown of the year.

“He is definitely something special,'’ said Muncie, who had 19 scores in 1981. “And I think the best is still ahead of him.

“It’s his smartness, his wits on the field. He reminds me of a combination of a James Brooks kind of guy —- that can run away from you and put the moves on you, but at the same time he will lower his shoulder and run you over.'’


Next season the Chargers host the Broncos, Chiefs, Raiders, Browns, Steelers, Cardinals, Rams and Titans.

The Chargers’ road games are at Denver, Kansas City, Oakland, Baltimore, Cincinnati, San Francisco, Seattle and Buffalo.


The Chargers’ unrestricted free agents are Brees, WR Reche Caldwell, TE Justin Peelle, G Bob Hallen, DE DeQuincy Scott, LBs Ben Leber and Carlos Polk, and CB Jamar Fletcher.

The restricted free agents are OL Kris Dielman and Courtney VanBuren, WR Kassim Osgood, FB Andrew Pinnock, DE Jacques Cesaire, LBs Matt Wilhelm and Stephen Cooper, and S Clinton Hart.


> Tomlinson is the team’s all-time leader in yards from scrimmage after passing WR Lance Alworth; Tomlinson has 9,755 yards, 34 more than Alworth. With his TD run, Tomlinson collected the 80th of his career.

> LB Shawne Merriman’s 10 sacks are the most by a Chargers rookie since Chris Mims had 10 in 1992. Leslie O’Neal holds the team’s rookie mark with 12 1/2 in 1986.

> WR Keenan McCardell’s six receptions put him at No. 10 on the NFL’s all-time list with 825.

> The Chargers’ 10 home games drew 634,154 fans, a team record.