It has taken a few days to get over this last loss. As I sat there and cleaned my house after the Monday night game, I had categorized my emotions into one word: numb.
As Chargers fans, we’ve seen this before. We’ve seen it entirely too often.
Blown leads, missed field goals, late touchdowns and more. Chargers fans have experienced some excruciating losses outside of the most recent loss to Pittsburgh.
Let me caveat this by saying this, it’s not one play that loses the game for the team. There are usually several things that build up to losses like the one on Monday. For instance, the crossing route to Keenan Allen that would’ve been a walk-in touchdown that saw the pass from Philip Rivers batted down at the line.
That being said, I wanted to look back at a painful history of losses that happened either on the last play or that led to a direct sequence that caused the Chargers to lose.
They say misery loves company, so join me on this miserable look back at some painful losses.
September 7th, 2008 – Chargers vs. Panthers
This one, to me, was the most similar to the game against the Steelers. The Chargers went up by five with just over two minutes left in the game. The Panthers drive down the field and with two seconds left, the ball at the 14-yard line, Jake Delhomme finds Dante Rosario in the back of the end zone for the game-winning touchdown with no time left on the clock.
September 15th, 2008 – Chargers vs. Broncos
Just eight days after the first loss listed in this piece, another painful loss the Chargers fans still haven’t gotten over. Quite frankly, I’m sure Ed Hochuli hasn’t forgotten this game. I guarantee that Chargers fans still remember it. Here’s the sequence of events:
- Cutler drops back and fumbles as he tries to throw the ball
- Ball is recovered by Tim Dobbins as Hochuli blows the whistle and signals incomplete pass
- Hochuli admits it should’ve been a fumble but by rule is incomplete
- Broncos score on the next play a touchdown to Eddie Royal and go for two to win the game (also complete to Royal)
- Chargers lose 39-38
An interesting note here, both Rosario and Royal went on to play for the Chargers after these game winners. Let’s also not forget Brandon Marshall had 18 catches in this game and was unstoppable.
January 17th, 2010 – Chargers vs. Jets – Playoffs
This one hurts. It’s where Nate Kaeding truly started to earn his nickname of wide right. THREE. MISSED. FIELD GOALS. If he makes one of those the game would’ve been tied. Two of them, and the Chargers have a lead. Brutal loss 17-14. This wasn’t a last second loss, but it was brutal. I remember covering my eyes after the first miss and it didn’t get any better on the next two tries.
There’s a reason we hate Mondays – Should we be surprised?
Monday night hasn’t been kind to the Chargers of late. There was the Texans game in 2013 (up 28-7 at one point) and the Broncos in 2012 (up 24-0 at halftime). These both hurt, as it looked like the Chargers were in cruise control only to be beaten late.
James Jett – October 11th, 1998
I still remember listening to this call on the radio. The Chargers had the lead 6-0 in the 4th quarter. Sure, this was a losing team and they weren’t going anywhere, but this one hurt. James Jett goes 68 yards for a touchdown with just under a minute and a half left in the game for the win. That was just one of two long touchdowns Jett scored on us that year. The other a 45-yard grab in a December rematch.
Chargers vs. Patriots 2007 – Playoffs
Let’s just call this what it is…the Marlon McCree game. This was probably the best shot the Chargers had to win a championship and bring it to San Diego. This team finished the year winning 6th straight to go 11-5 and had the talent to go all the way. Then it happened. McCree makes a great read and picks the ball off and instead of falling begins to run with it, is stripped by Troy Brown and the Patriots throw a touchdown to Reche Caldwell and end up winning the game. Sure, a lot happened after the McCree fumble, but it feels like that would’ve sealed it for the Bolts.
Now, there are other games that come to mind, like the Redskins game in 2013 after the Chargers couldn’t punch it in from the one-yard line. I’m sure I’ve missed some games that are equally if not more painful, as well. But these are the ones that stuck out for me.
Comment below on any other games you remember that were excruciatingly painful.
Thanks for commiserating.