Since the Godfather in these parts evaluates the season in quarters, let's call this the State of the Union address for the season to date. I know that the first quarter is over and that we are about a third of the way through the football season and that much closer to suffering through what will be another dismal baseball effort, so let's recount what's happened thus far...
The team is shitty. Sorry if that ruins your Super Bowl delusions that has seemingly infected most rational people in these parts since June. This is no Super Bowl team. This isn't even a good team. Five games into the season and here we sit with a losing record against very mediocre football teams. There are some issues that are easy to identify. Since Nick Canepa and Godfather A.J. Wayne won't identify them, please allow me to present them on a silver platter for your enjoyment. Call me glib, call me pessimistic, call me a realist. Time to stop drinking the Kool Aid and get your heads out of the sand. In no particular order...
* Vanilla. The offense is vanilla. There is no creativity. There is no thought. There is no plan. There is, a bunch of ego. There is an entitlement complex. There is an overall feeling that we are owed something. We're not. Other teams are flat out busting our ass wide open and guys look confused and frustrated. Antonio Gates has disappeared. Why? I know why... you have to wait a few more bullets to find out.
* Ahh...., defense. Should be called offense cause it's fucking offensive. Today was whatever word you can think of that means the same as utter complete colossal joke. It was interesting enough that Denver was able to put up a full shitload of points against us with nothing more than an S.E.C. offense, but today, Miami actually turned us into a short bus full of kindergarden level retards on the defense. I've seen Miami's offense before. It was in Pop Warner. Earlier I thought I'd seen it in High School football, but that was wholly inaccurate. I've only seen that work in Pop Warner. Perhaps Matt Wilhelm was a bit premature by doing Joey Porter's sack dance in the first quarter instead of remembering to tackle Ronnie Brown. And hey, whoever over there is in charge, why are we sagging nearly 12 yards off the line of scrimmage on outside receivers such as Greg Camarillo and Ted Ginn? Really? 12 yards against those guys? Miami routinely picked up five yards a pop on the outside cause we let Chad 'noodle arm' Pennington off the hook. Five yards a pop is a pretty good average when you only need two downs to make another first down. Even 'noodles' himself can throw a simple out when there is no press coverage. Hmmmmm, funny.
* That being said, hey coaches! Coaches? Today you fail. A.J. and Nick may grade the season in quarters and deemed Q1 a success by giving it a C grade. C's are average, lord knows C's got me through college, less because I'm stupid and more because I was lazy, but Q1 was no success. It was no C. It was a complete failure. Two and two is successful? Funny that a team with Super Bowl aspirations would be satisfied with two and two. Needless to say that the failure continued yet again today with what can be considered at least by me, to be the worst coached football game in the Turner era. Horrifyingly bad. I can list about a hundred items about the game I disliked, but we'll focus on the end of the game. Specifically with four minutes to go in the fourth quarter. Use your time outs. Preserve the clock. Instead, we didn't, the Sparano and the fucking thyroid challenged Tuna kept running Pop Warner formations and we kept coughing up first downs. Skip to two minutes and change left, and we continued to do the same, not using the two minute warning as a backstop, but saving those timeouts. That two minute stop gap came and went and we never secured the ball again. I know a little about football. And gee, do you need to be a genius to get somebody like Antonio Gates (told you I'd come back to this) into the game? Why are we going away from what made us so successful under the previous regime that got run out of town after a 14-2 season? Really? No more Gates? At all? Seems rather uh, what's the word?.... idiotic? Yes, idiotic... to me at least. I'm certainly not at any kind of professional level when it comes to football strategies, but it's funny that I feel like I know more about football than the people captaining this ship and careening it into the same iceberg that claimed the Titanic.
* Disclaimer: This may be the hardest thing I write perhaps ever. Ladainian Tomlinson is finished as a Charger. Sorry to have to be the bearer of such harsh news. LTD wants to quit football. It's readily apparent and it's in his body language and his blatent lack of performance. It was a nice run with LTD but there will be no more references to him as TBE, as some call him, "the best ever.". No more. LTD wants to take his ball and go home. Don't believe me? Fine. Don't believe me. I'll lay out some evidence and you can judge it as you will. But don't jade yourself like the first O.J. jury and think it isn't true because this is fact my friend. Straight FACT. Last week Mr. TBE got a little hung up on a handoff with ol' Marmalaard. Turned out not to work out so well for the home squad and Phil fumbled the exchange and a safety was born. Today, ol' Marmalaard and LTD had yet another problem with an exchange, where Phil nearly tripped over LTD trying to hand him the ball. Last week, a free defender came mashing through the line and LTD saw him and cut off his play. He did not run to his spot and Phil wound up on an island trying to hand off the football to someone who did not want the exchange. LTD was afraid to take a hit and opted out of the play. The result? Safety. Today, Joey Porter came free and ol' LTD came up short, didn't run to his spot, afraid of taking a hit. Phil nearly tripped over him and almost fumbled again. This lands squarely and wholeheartedly on the running back. And really, do we need to bring up the 4th down play from the 3/4 yard line where the handoff went to TBE and he tiptoed his way to the line of scrimmage. Funny how I remember a time where TBE would launch himself over everyone and land 5 yards deep in the end zone. Now, he tiptoes to the line and gets smeared and we get no touchdown. So..., LTD, I'm speaking to you. If you are afraid of the big bad defense, get off the field. If you are hurt and you can't perform to the point where you can take a handoff without being afraid, or get into the end zone from 30 inches away, get off the field. Stop pouting and get off the field. You are slowly becoming an open wound on this team. I'm never buying any of the t.v.'s you are so busy hocking, cause you are becoming a disgrace. If you don't like football, stop playing. Quit pretending that you are a football player cause you look like a bitch.
So. There it is. Do with it what you will. There will be no happy cheerleader photo to follow and no more rah rah bullshit. Take this team for what it is. Mediocre at best. At BEST. To quote the great Ron Burgundy, "Go fuck yourself San Diego."