Monthly Archives: August 2015
Articles from Chargers.com:
Articles from The San Diego Union-Tribune:
Articles from Eric Williams of ESPN.com:
On Saturday night, quarterback Philip Rivers agreed to a four-year contract extension with the San Diego Chargers that will keep him in lightning bolts through the year 2019. The deal is between $84-85 million dollars and comes with $65 million guaranteed dollars per NFL Networks’ Ian Rapoport who broke the story. Rivers will sign the extension on Monday.
The Chargers front office has taken a lot of fire this offseason for how they have handled player contracts this offseason. They stepped up to the plate and guaranteed Rivers will be a Charger for life as GM Tom Telesco has said in countless interviews. The exclamation point is the guaranteed money. The $65 million is the largest guaranteed dollar amount given to a player in NFL history. The deal surpasses the $61.5 million that was guaranteed to Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson just a month ago.
This is a lightning bolt of great news that has energized the San Diego fan base if you peruse social media. Despite what happens in the relocation scenario, the elephant in the room was Rivers, who was in the last year of his current contract this season. The subject of trade speculation in the weeks leading up to the draft, Rivers spoke hesitantly about his willingness to resign if the Chargers move to Los Angeles. Thankfully, that game is over and the franchise quarterback will stay put until the day he decides to hang up his cleats.
Though it remains to be seen how the new members of the offensive line perform, Rivers had to be impressed in the guys the front office brought in to protect him. Orlando Franklin (6’7″, 320 lb) is a left guard the Chargers signed away from the rival Denver Broncos. Joe Barksdale (6’5″, 326 lb) is a right tackle signed away from St. Louis. The pair of 27-year old studs solidify weak spots on both sides of the line.
The signings of reserve center Trevor Robinson (6’5″, 300 lb), guard Michael Huey (6’4″, 317 lb) and tackle Chris Hairston (6’6″, 330 lb) provide quality depth to a line that resembles a turnstile last season. This group will be tasked with keeping Rivers clean and opening holes for the running backs. At first look, they look very capable of doing so.
With Rivers solidly back in the fold, they are primed to overtake the Denver Broncos and reclaim their former dominance at the top of the AFC West. They’re bound to experience growing pains with new workhorse running back Melvin Gordon. Much is expected of the Chargers 2015 first round draft pick but his transition to the pro game will be a little easier with a stable of veterans to lean on. A healthy Danny Woodhead and human bowling ball Branden Oliver will also take pressure off as they will share the backfield load, turning the running back position into a three-headed monster.
This deal was inevitable. Rivers is undoubtedly the heart and soul of the team. He is the undisputed leader and face of the franchise. Rivers’ intelligence, toughness and passing proficiency is unquestioned. At this moment, Rivers is the sixth highest rated passer in NFL history. By the end of his career, Rivers will own every significant Chargers passing record.
Will San Diego win the West this year? If they stay healthy (big if), they can absolutely overtake the Broncos. At the very least the race for the top spot should go down to the wire. I expect at least ten wins this season which puts them in the playoff picture. Rivers has his best collection of offensive talent top to bottom since the Tomlinson years.
Peyton Manning is already declining and will most likely retire at the end of this or next season. Rivers still has plenty of life left in his arm and we long suffering bolts fans can finally realistically expect deep postseason runs culminating with a long overdue Super Bowl ring(s) for our MVP!
Congratulations Philip from all of us in Bolt Nation!
The Greg One
The San Diego Chargers played their first preseason game Thursday night against the Dallas Cowboys. In front of their home crowd the bolts won the contest 17-7. As we all know, the score is immaterial. The important thing is how did the team look? There are a lot of players fighting for a roster spot. Who is giving maximum effort and who is not? How big is the talent differential when the second and third units come in compared to the unit before them? These are the key things to watch in a preseason game. Here are my takeaways from the first game.
Preseason or not, it was great to see that it didn’t take long before the team got their first takeaway. The first team defense recovered a snap that went over the head of Cowboys quarterback Brandon Weeden. Donald Butler crashed the backfield and eliminated the quarterback from the play, kicking the ball upfield in the process. The ball was then recovered by an offseason acquisition, cornerback Patrick Robinson. The Chargers would force and recover a second fumble in the half. The Chargers only had 18 takeaways all last season. That stat needs to improve if they’re going to be a serious playoff contender.
The running game looked sharp. Last season the running game was out-of-sync all season with the exception of the emergence of Branden Oliver. After Danny Woodhead went down in week three and Mathews resumed his usual spot at the trainer’s table the Chargers running game died. Woodhead looked great in his return from a broken leg, rushing for an eight-yard touchdown on his first carry. Oliver also ran with power and Barry Sanders-like shiftiness, posting 53 yards and a touchdown on ten carries. Melvin Gordon gained 11 yards on six carries. He will gain more carries and confidence now that the first game jitters are out of the way. We all expect Gordon to be in contention for Rookie of the Year at season’s end but let’s temper our expectations. With rookies come growing pains.
The special teams looked better than they have in previous seasons. Undrafted kicker Josh Lambo provided a welcome sight in sending kickoffs through the end zone. Kicker Nick Novak booted a 52-yard field goal in the fourth quarter that looked like it would have been good from another ten yards back. Punter Mike Scifres looked like his old self after finishing last season on injured reserve with a broken collarbone. Scifres’ first punt pinned the Cowboys inside their own five yard line. Reserve cornerback Chris Davis had a couple exciting kick returns and Javontee Herndon looked great finding holes on punt returns. Paired with Jacoby Jones, this may be the best group of returners the Chargers have had in a long while.
The first team defense showed the ability to get a good pass rush against what is considered to be the best offensive line in the league. Second round draft pick Denzel Perryman showed his nose for the ball with five tackles, a pass defensed and got close on a couple of potential sacks. Manti Te’o disrupted plays. Fifth round draft pick Kyle Emanuel had a great showing with three solo tackles including a sack and tackle for loss. It was also good to see nose tackle Ryan Carrethers finally off the injured reserve list and on the field. Carrethers was double-teamed on every snap he played and still managed to get two tackles.
As always, there are things to work on. The run defense, while only allowing 70 yards on the night could have had an even better output were it not for a lot of missed tackles. On the Cowboys lone score, running back Gus Johnson dragged several Chargers defenders into the end zone for the score.
Special teams did a good job in containment but there were also some tackles left on the field that could have put the Cowboys deep into their own territory. Tackling is an ailment that is usual during the first preseason games because there isn’t much tackling going on in training camp. Expect the tackling to improve as these exhibition games pass.
The biggest downside were the injuries. Offensive lineman Johnnie Troutman worked hard to get on the field after a leg injury only to break his arm during the game. Outside linebacker Tourek Williams was having a great game pressuring the quarterback and running down ball carriers until he broke his foot in the third quarter. Williams underwent surgery on Friday and the timetable on his return is unknown at the moment. While the two weren’t starters they are key depth positions.
All in all, it’s the preseason. There will be plenty of game tape with enough mistakes that there will be no shortage of things to work on this week. San Diego should feel confident in the collection of players on their sideline. This is a team fans should feel proud to come out and support. This is a team (if they can stay healthy) that can overtake the Broncos for the AFC West title. If this is their last season in the 619 area code, they will be going out with a bang.
What did you think of the season opener? Post your comments below.
The Greg One
Golly! It’s about gosh darn time.
Tonight at 7:30 pm your San Diego Chargers will host the Dallas Cowboys at Qualcomm Stadium. Although the starters won’t see much playing time, there is a lot to be excited about.
- As mentioned above, the first-team offense and defense won’t be on the field for more than a series or two.
- This is the 16th time the Chargers and Cowboys have met in the preseason. The Bolts hold an 8-7 advantage.
- Please understand in advance that both teams will be very “vanilla” in their play calling on both sides of the ball.
- It will be interesting, due to his inexperience at right guard, how long D.J. Fluker will stay in the game.
- The final score does not matter in the slightest. These preseason contests are about evaluating the players and staying healthy. For example, the 2008 Detroit Lions went 4-0 during the preseason that year. They then went on to finish the regular season as the only team in NFL history to go 0-16.
- The last report I heard about Jason Verrett playing tonight was that it was a “longshot.” It wouldn’t surprise me if Brandon Flowers sat this one out, as well.
Players to keep an eye on:
Melvin Gordon – Being listed as the starting running back on the depth chart, Gordon won’t be on the field too much. But it will be nice to see the first-round draft choice in action. Keep an eye on him in pass protection and as a receiver out of the backfield.
Colton Underwood – Per the advice of Nick Hardwick during his new program “Behind the Bolt,” Underwood is a player that I’ll be keeping an eye on. The second-year linebacker has impressed many people at Chargers Park during this offseason. Underwood should see a quite a bit of playing time tonight.
Ryan Carrethers – The former fifth round draft pick is entering his second-year with the Bolts. With Sean Lissemore sitting this one out due to a hand/wrist ailment, Carrethers could see more of the field than expected. The 24-year-old began to come on late during the 2014 season before getting hurt, pushing the pocket and filling running lanes.
Titus Davis – This will be about the sixth time that I have written about Davis, I know, but I really think this kid has a chance to earn a role with this team. It may only be with the practice squad, but he just looks like he belongs in the NFL. Due to the wide receiving corps being stacked on the 53-man roster, he will have the opportunity to soak in as much knowledge as possible from the veterans at his position.
Josh Lambo – The undrafted free agent has his first chance to show off his leg on kickoffs starting this evening. If he performs well throughout the next month, he may state his case for a spot on the 53-man roster. That is not to say he’ll take field goal and extra point attempt duties from Nick Novak, but it is no secret that Novak struggles on kickoff depth. Keeping two kickers is not completely out of the question.
Michael Huey – The 26-year-old is now in his second stint with the Chargers. He spent some time with the team in 2011. Huey has received a ton of praise from McCoy during training camp. He has recently been working with the second-team offense at right guard. With Johnnie Troutman spending a bit of time watching from the sidelines, this is a good opportunity for Huey to seize the back-up role at right guard.
Craig Mager – This year’s third-round draft choice has struggled adapting to the pace and complexity of the NFL game. Tonight’s game is a great stepping stone for him to begin to slow down the thinking process and just play football. Mager is very athletic with good speed. Another impressive part of his game is his physicality. He is not afraid to stick his nose in there against the running game.
Articles from Chargers.com:
Articles from Eric Williams of ESPN.com:
Articles from The San Diego Union-Tribune:
Another miserable day to be a fan of the San Diego Chargers.
The news from today’s meeting with the NFL and the NFL owners was not what San Diego Chargers fans wanted to hear.
Carmen Policy stated that the Raiders and the Chargers are fully committed to Los Angeles. He went on to ensure that Dean Spanos was fully committed.
I feel like I should be committed. I’m losing my damn mind over this crap.
The following questions have been posed by multiple media outlets: Would you travel to Carson should the Chargers move? Will you still be a fan of the Chargers if they were in Los Angeles (Inglewood or Carson)?
After sifting through all of the various tweets, I figured I’d throw some of the “best” responses in an article.
— No Good Cheech (@Cheech619) August 11, 2015
— Gavin (@CT2SD) August 11, 2015
@chargers You guys must be high on methane gas leaking from your Carson stadium site if you think SD fans are following you to Smell Aye!
— geapetto, florentini (@gpettooh) August 11, 2015
I have a lot of @Chargers gear. I also have a big box. Unfortunately, today feels like the day for introductions. What a bummer.
— AJM (@AvengingJM) August 11, 2015
— The AFC West Show (@AFCWestShow) August 12, 2015
@Judson1360 I’d rather someone shit in my mouth than go to Carson for a chargers game
— TomFoolery (@TomFoooolery) August 11, 2015
That seems like a pretty good place to stop.
It goes without saying, people are not happy. The fans of the San Diego Chargers feel betrayed, and they have every right to feel that way.
The move to Los Angeles seems certain to happen. That being said, it ain’t over until it’s over.
Oh, who the hell am I kidding.
My stance on the Chargers at this point is to just try to enjoy as much of this season as possible. I hope they win the whole damn thing and all of the veteran players that helped them get there ( Philip Rivers, Eric Weddle, Antonio Gates, Malcom Floyd, et cetera ) all play for other teams or retire next year.
Darin Gantt of Pro Football Talk writes about the fate of a new Rivers’ contract prior to the season beginning.
Articles from Chargers.com:
An interesting piece from the LA Times in 1985 which talks in-depth about Alex Spanos.
Michael Gehlken of The San Diego Union-Tribune talks about the high praise the Chargers’ receivers have for cornerback Jason Verrett.
Tom Krasovic of The San Diego Union-Tribune writes a post about Melvin Gordon overcoming jitters.
It has been a long and difficult wait, but it is almost over. Chargers football returns on Thursday, August 13th, at 7:00 pm at the Q. The team’s first preseason contest will be against the Dallas Cowboys.
The Chargers selected five men in this year’s NFL draft. I am going to break down what to look for from each of them in their season debuts.
The Bolts made a bit of a splash when they traded up to select Wisconsin running back Melvin Gordon with the 15th overall pick. After that, it was all defense, as they had a lot of holes to fill. The team selected inside linebacker Denzel Perryman, cornerback Craig Mager, linebacker Kyle Emanuel, and defensive end Darius Philon.
1st round pick – Melvin Gordon: Yes, Gordon is a rookie. But he’s slated to be the main ball carrier for the Chargers this year. Although he is expected to receive the majority of snaps during the regular season, I wouldn’t expect to see a whole lot of playing time for him in this one.
What to watch for: Look to see if Melvin shows some patience, allowing his blocks to form in front of him instead of constantly trying to bounce it to the outside like he did a lot in college. Look to see how his pass protection is, and keep an eye on his hands in passing game. There have reports of him dropping a few balls in practice. Prediction: 10-12 touches with 40 yards rushing.
2nd round pick – Denzel Perryman: Perryman was brought in for one main reason: To knock somebody’s block off. He is here to bring toughness and nastiness to a defense that has been lacking just that since Steve Foley was in San Diego. Look for some big hits from the former Hurricane, but don’t expect him to be on the field during obvious passing downs.
What to watch for: Look for Perryman to be on the field on first and second down, trying to stop the run. Keep an eye on his tackling form and how he brings the hurt. Prediction: 25-40 snaps with seven tackles.
3rd round pick – Craig Mager: There’s no nice way to put it, but Mager has struggled mightily in training camp, getting marginally better as the days go on. He’s got a lot of work to do in order to impress this coaching staff. The only spot that Mager seems to be having some success is at nickel corner.
What to watch for: Look for Mager to be covering kickoffs and sprinkled in at slot corner. Like I said earlier, he’s got a lot of work to do. Prediction: 15-20 snaps with two tackles.
5th Round pick – Kyle Emanuel: Emanuel was drafted to add pass rush and potentially help set the edge against the run. Emanuel has looked pretty sharp in practice, showing off some very good pass rushing moves.
What to watch for: Look for Emanuel to be in there rushing the passer. He’s going in to take the quarterback’s head off. Watch for the spin move, as many people have said that it’s NFL-quality. Prediction: 20-30 snaps, five tackles and one sack.
6th round pick – Darius Philon: Philon was selected to help add some push to the defensive line. Reports from camp say that the young man has worked very hard in camp, shows good push and looks strong.
What to watch for: Look for Philon to be a part of the rotation along the defensive line with Mitch Unrein, Ryan Carrethers and others. Since he is a late-round pick, look for him to play the majority of the game. Prediction: 50+ snaps with six tackles.
Well, that will put a wrap on my Chargers versus Cowboys 2015 draft pick preview.
After six long months, it is my pleasure to say that football is BACK!!
Thank you very much for taking the time to read this article.
According to a tweet from Xtra 1360 FSSD, Mark Fabiani has already responded to Mayor Faulconer’s speech today.
Mark Fabiani has already responded to the Mayor’s speech today… pic.twitter.com/3U6P2MHIVa
— XTRA 1360 FSSD (@XTRA1360) August 10, 2015
I suppose that we all should have expected something similar to this being said, but it just shows the impasse between the City and the Chargers continues to grow.
It is looking more and more like the team has already started packing for Los Angeles. Maybe it already looked that way, and I’ve just been in denial.
The fact of the matter is, the City and the Mayor are making a fourth-quarter push. The question would then turn to, is it too late?
It sure seems like it.
Ricky Henne of Chargers.com provides a scouting reports for Thursday’s opener against the Cowboys.
Eric Williams of ESPN.com talks about how former NFL receiver Eric Moulds is working a s a coaching intern for the Chargers.
Mark Maske of The Washington Post states that some NFL owners support the Chargers and Raiders over the Rams when it comes to relocating to Los Angeles.