Friday, November 22, 2013

I'm Fashioning A Shiv Right Now

Okay, we've really been slacking here, but in our defense this season went off the rails pretty badly. I had to rethink everything I ever thought I knew about football. I mean, is it possible that my early prediction of a 12-4 season was biased in some way by some strange factor? My love of the team? My hatred of Norv and AJ? My desperate need to see a San Diego Chargers Superbowl Championship before they get the Hell* out of dodge? I don't know. I apparently know nothing.

What is there to say at this point? We're still technically in it? I'm still technically in it in one of my fantasy leagues where I started 0-7, but I'm not going to start popping champaign over it. I could mention how injuries on this squad have been ridiculous this year, but what's the point? I could read off a laundry list of key players who are out for the season. Denario Alexander, Malcolm Floyd, Jared Gaither**, Melvin Ingram***, Dwight Freeney, Your Mom and a ton of other guys who've missed time like it's alien abduction week on Desination America, but what's the point? No, I'm still hopeful that this team is heading in the right direction, or at least the "righter" direction, but to think this season is going to be the kind of pleasant surprise I was hoping for is silly. I mean, believe me, I'm still rooting and crying and breaking stuff and whatnot, but I've accepted our fate. I'm just going to go ahead and be thankful we're not the Falcons or their fans. Those people actually thought they were going to the superbowl this year. Ouch.

Anyway, that's all well and good and I'm glad we're all in agreement, but Chargers football is not what I'm here to talk about. What I want to discuss is Charlie Manson. Yes, that Chuck Manson. Charleston Manson's not being shanked to death in jail by now is really testing my faith in the system. Can we get somebody on that? A recent article states that some 25 year old woman wants to marry Chuck. Her name is Star. Obviously. Chuck gave her that name. Of course. But Chuck is like, and I'm paraphrasing here, "Fuck that shit. Not interested." Delightful! Charles Manson is almost as magical as Hitler. At some point, as a society, don't we have to look at 25 year old, perfectly healthy, not entirely unattractive women who want to marry a ridiculous homicidal weirdo like Chuck and say, "Nope, we're going to have to go ahead and put you down?" If she were a pitbull or a bear, she'd have been buried out back by now. I mean, what are the odds she's going to "snap out of it" and start contributing? This world. If there's any justice she will be knocked out by a group of any old teenagers anywhere playing a game that all teenagers play regardless of any apparent significant relative factors.

Thanks for allowing me to rant. Way too big a post for Facebook. Enjoy your football weekend. I think we clobber the Chiefs. Go Bolts!!!

*Why won't my phone capitalize Hell? It's a fucking place. And we're all probably going there.
**He will always be a Charger. That's the jersey they'll hang in the Hall someday.
***I know he might be coming back, but I don't know why.

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Expletives Abound...

It's taken me a couple days to shake off Sunday's throat punch loss. What could have been a season defining win, turned ugly and awful in one fell swoop. While the sky still isn't falling, there was a real opportunity there for the team to establish themselves as not favorites to win the crown, but contenders that no one would want to play. Unfortunately, the series of events at the end of regulation did not allow for that to materialize.

We can rehash what happened on the final series of downs inside the one yard line all we want and second guess the play calling and the offensive approach, but that doesn't change the result. Should we have gone power formation and slammed the ball in on first down? Yes. Did we? No. Why? No one knows and Mike McCoy isn't tipping his hand either. Criticism was heaped upon him and the staff from all pundits and angles and while I'm sure that McCoy isn't pleased about the end result, hopefully this is a teaching moment and that sort of conservative approach is ushered out of the play book with extreme haste.

Many are blaming the refereeing for some atrocious calls, namely the phantom pass interference call, the phantom unnecessary roughness call, and yes the atrocious spot on the Woodhead non touchdown call. However, let's not lose sight of the Woodhead fumble that clearly went in our favor. Now, as much as I want to pile on the refs and blame somebody for the nauseating loss, this one falls squarely on our staff. Again, this was an opportunity to really define this football team. A last minute comeback victory on the road would have really boosted this team's confidence and I firmly believe would have given the young players even more
motivation for the rest of the season. Alas, after inside handoff for no gain, poorly executed and thought out fade route, and finally designed roll out for the least mobile quarterback in the history of football, the guys got on the team charter for the long ride home with the stench of defeat oozing from their pores. Sad. Really really sad.

Max and I dwelled on this for far too long last night continuing to question why the apparent fear of failure from inside the one yard line prevented us from giving the ball to our power running back, and or completely selling out for the victory in that situation. It was almost as if the vote of no confidence resurfaced at the most inopportune time for Mathews. It also appeared as if the comfort of overtime allowed those decisions to be made. What Max and I were unable to reconcile despite our many attempts was why that suddenly seemed to make sense. Why would the minute possibility of a Mathews fumble make overtime more appealing? Why not pound the ball into the end zone on four straight attempts? If you fail so what? You lose. But by not trying, we wound up playing for overtime where a coin flip and a tired defense were completely in play, and that thought process made sense to some. I'm truly at a loss.

So, now we get Denver, twice. Kansas City, twice. Miami and Cincinnati. That doesn't seem as appealing at 4-4 coming off a kick in the balls of a loss as it would at 5-3 with a  solid dose of bravado after squeaking out a victory across the country. I'd like to test the mettle of this team in the latter scenario, but we're forced to do it with the former. I guess this will be another telling moment as to where this team is. The team should feel like they won that game. I truly hope the staff can build on that and not let their failures trickle down to the guys.

Lost in Sunday's result is the fact that this team will make something of themselves and we are on the right road. However, the result from Sunday probably sealed our fate for the season and we'll in short order be thinking about 2014 rather than a cinderella playoff run in 2013. Unfortunate, but probably true. And that, in and of itself is what made Sunday so, so shitty. Sometimes, most times, being a Charger fan is tough tough business. This is one of those times.

Monday, November 04, 2013

Deja Vu All Over Again

That was a tough one. Especially because we didn't have to lose. The game was ours for the taking and we made some terrible choices that we are going to have to live with going into the decidedly tougher second half of our schedule.

All four of our losses have been difficult, but yesterday was atrocious. The defense kind of got hung with each of those previous losses whether that's fair or not. A lot of people would love to hang it on them again yesterday and it's hard to argue that. But I'm going to.  I'm certainly not the first to say any of this stuff, but I'm going to say it all anyway. If you have 1st and goal inside the ONE, with 21 seconds and two time outs, you win the game there or you lose the game there. That's it.

Danny Woodhead has been incredible for this team. Quietly even the MVP, probably. But one thing he has not proven to do particularly well is run at the goal line. And on a counter?! Just fuck that shit! Follow that up with two pass attempts that were very clearly meant to be no where near where a defender could get to them and thereby very hard for a receiver to get to, and it became clear we were playing for OT. From inside the fucking one!

At this point it's clear that the fear of a Ryan Mathews fumble has become a quite literally crippling fear of a Ryan Mathews fumble. There is no one else on the team who should touch the ball in that situation. He can go high, He can go low. He can move the pile. And what does a fumble matter anyway if you're going to go with that pussy ass bullshit? I haven't heard anything about Mathews being injured, but I honestly haven't looked to hard. I have no desire to read what's being written out there right now.

As far as those who want to pile on the defense, let me remind you all that the Redskins flipped the script on us on Sunday and controlled the clock masterfully. And still our defense was out there batting passes and doing their best. 24 points in regulation is not fantastic, but it's enough to give you a very good shot at the win and that is what we had. And then we handed it right back.

Final thoughts:

1) You're QB is 6'5". If you absolutely, positively refuse to let Mathews touch the ball at the end, maybe you let Rivers fall over for two feet to win the game.

2) I have so far been in the bag for this new coaching staff, but that counter to Woodhead was eerily reminiscent of the infamous Sproles-Lewis collision debacle that largely defined the Norv Turner area. Not okay.

3) A big "Fuck You" to whoever put that Keenan Allen drop on the cover of the UT. I, too, felt like that drop was devastating at the time, but the team rallied back from that largely due to the efforts of Allen himself. That drop ended up having almost nothing to do with the loss yesterday. Allen may be the very brightest spot on this young team right now, and why the local paper would try to get in his head like that is completely unfathomable to me. This is how you will know him.

4) The second half is a juggernaut. It's time to start overachieving.

Go Bolts!!!