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AFC West evening news and notes

Discussion in 'Chargers Fan Forum' started by Concudan, Dec 23, 2008.

  1. Concudan

    Concudan Caffeinated Commando

    Mar 5, 2006
    Posted by ESPN.com's Bill Williamson

    Here is a look at the season schedules of the 2003 Minnesota Vikings and the 2008 Denver Broncos. If Denver losses Sunday night at San Diego, it will join the 2003 Vikings as the only teams in NFL history to blow a three-game lead in the division. The Vikings' demise was a four-game losing streak in the middle of the season while Denver's downfall would be three straight losses to end the season.

    Denver coach Mike Shanahan said cornerback Champ Bailey will be ready to play Sunday. Bailey returned against Buffalo after missing seven games with a torn groin but he had to leave the game twice.

    The San Diego weather forecast calls for the temperature to be in the high 40s Sunday night for the AFC West showdown.

    According to ESPN's Stats & Information, the game in San Diego will be the fourth time that a playoff spot will be decided on the field on the final week. The last time it occurred was in 1991 when the Jets beat the Dolphins. The last time a division crown was decided on the field on the final day was 1988 when Seattle beat Oakland to win the AFC West.

    If San Diego wins the division, it will become the first 8-8 team to win a division crown since the 1985 Browns. That team is the only 8-8 team ever to win a division.

    If the Chargers win, they will be the first team that was 4-8 after 12 games to go to the playoffs.

    The Chiefs are close to setting an NFL record for the fewest sacks in a season. Kansas City has nine sacks. The record is 13 by the 1981 Colts.

    Kansas City tight end Tony Gonzalez now owns the NFL mark for the most 1,000-yard receiving records with four. He also has the most 1,000-yard receiving seasons by any Kansas City player. Gonzalez has 1,005 receiving yards in 15 games.

    Denver has now put 16 players on the injured reserve this season. In contrast, San Diego has placed four players on the injured reserve.

    San Diego coach Norv Turner said receiver Malcolm Floyd is doubtful to play Sunday with a collapsed lung. He didn't play at Tampa Bay on Sunday.

    Turner said Monday he was planning to call Bills' coach Dick Jauron. The Bills ' win at Denver on Sunday setup the winner-take-all game.

    The Broncos' reaction after losing to the Bills? "Everyone is disgusted," according to Shanahan.

    Shanahan said San Diego quarterback Philip Rivers deserves to be in the Pro Bowl, "no question about it." Rivers is the first alternate to the game. Denver quarterback Jay Cutler is one of the three AFC quarterbacks. Rivers will likely go to Hawaii. Jets' quarterback Brett Favre was selected. Yet, he rarely goes to the game.

    Here is the Chiefs' 2009 home and road opponents. The dates will be announced next spring. The Chiefs, 2-13, have secured fourth place in the AFC West:

    N.Y. Giants
    San Diego

    San Diego

  2. cranberry

    cranberry BoltTalker

    Oct 3, 2006
    We gotta get tis win. and it won't be the end.......
  3. rexy2006

    rexy2006 Well-Known Member

    Dec 17, 2005
    Search: [​IMG] guardian.co.uk Sport Web


    The Broncos's collapse has revived the Chargers into real contenders

    Three weeks ago, San Diego looked dead and buried — now they have an excellent chance of making the playoffs

    Posted by Paolo Bandini Monday, 22 December 2008 21.35 GMT


    Tampa Bay Buccaneers linebacker Barrett Ruud (right) tackles San Diego Chargers' tight end Antonio Gates. Photograph: Pierre DuCharme/Reuters

    How has this happened? Three weeks ago the San Diego Chargers were finished, their season effectively over after a home defeat to the Atlanta Falcons left their record at 4-8 with a quarter of the season left to play. Even in the woeful AFC West, the Chargers were never going to catch a Denver Broncos team who by that stage had seven wins under their belt. The following week Denver beat the Kansas City Chiefs to move to 8-5.

    One more win for the Broncos from their next two games would have clinched the division. Nobody in Denver was too concerned when they failed to get that win on the road against a Carolina Panthers team who were unbeaten at home and seeded second in the NFC. After all, their next game was a gimme — at home against a Buffalo Bills team who had lost seven of their last eight.

    The Broncos blew it. Despite jumping out to a 13-0 lead, despite dominating the time of possession and despite outgaining the Bills by 532 yards to 275, the Broncos somehow contrived to lose 30-23.

    "The Broncos coulda, shoulda, woulda put away the Bills in the first quarter, but they had no pride, no purpose," writes Woody Paige in this morning's Denver Post. "They gave away the victory as if it were a neatly wrapped gift."

    Of course, one more defeat for the Chargers would have been just as decisive, but that didn't happen either. After hammering the Oakland Raiders in week 14, then pulling off one of the most unlikely comebacks in league history a week later against the Kansas City Chiefs, San Diego travelled to Tampa Bay and crushed the Buccaneers 41-24.

    Now the Broncos must travel to San Diego for their last game of the season. Unbelievably, the Chargers are not only still alive, they actually control their own playoff destiny. Whoever wins, gets in. The omens are good for San Diego. Denver have closed their regular season with road games against the Chargers seven times, and won just once.

    "It says a lot about our players and a lot about what our players think of their coach," said Chargers team president Dean Spanos after the game, insisting that the team had never lost faith in head coach Norv Turner. "They've played hard. That's really important."

    If the Broncos were to lose, they would set a new standard for late-season collapses. Since the NFL first split into divisions in 1967 (as opposed to the Eastern and Western conferences that had existed previously), no team has ever held a three-game lead in any of those divisions with three games remaining and still failed to make the postseason. For the Chargers, though, victory would represent the ultimate vindication.

    Ever since losing to the Broncos back in week two, San Diego have been carrying around a chip on their shoulder the size of a small canyon. Leading that game 38-31 in the fourth quarter, the Chargers appeared to have effectively sealed the win when they recovered a Jay Cutler fumble with barely a minute remaining. That was before it transpired that referee Ed Hochuli had already blown his whistle, thinking he had seen an incomplete pass.

    Replays informed him otherwise, but NFL rules mean Hochuli had no choice but to rule the play over when his whistle went, meaning that Denver retained possession. Two plays later they scored a touchdown, then got the two-point conversion to win the game.

    Since then, the Hochuli call has been held up as the turning point of the Chargers' season. No matter how poorly they have played, or how often they have shot themselves in the foot, San Diego apologists have been able to — with some justification — insist that they would still be in contention in the AFC West had the play been called correctly.

    Now, though, that call becomes a moot point. If the Chargers are good enough, they will beat the Broncos at home and go into the playoffs. With the league's best quarterback — from a statistical perspective, at least — under center and Ladanian Tomlinson in the backfield, they might even be a threat to win some games when they get there, despite all that's gone before.

    In case you were wondering, Hochuli has not been chosen to officiate. :tup:
  4. Rainman

    Rainman BoltTalker

    Sep 4, 2006
    Gosh, what a shock! :icon_tease:
  5. Concudan

    Concudan Caffeinated Commando

    Mar 5, 2006
    Gotta say. i know why most people hate Hochuli.

    But I still like him and consider him the best ref in the NFL. Typically when a ref at that level makes that sort of mistake they ignore the implications and go on. Hochuli took it on the chin, responded to fan e-mails. he took full accountability instead of hiding behind the shroud of silence the NFL throws up.

    I gotta respect him for that, and for his record of calling good games.

    For the season, this is a dog bolt, using the Bronco snowman for a latrine...
  6. LaDeezie21

    LaDeezie21 BoltTalker

    Aug 26, 2005
    True, Hochuli messed up and I wouldn't mind if he refed the final game. I think it would be fitting because you know if any questionable call would occur he'd make damn sure that they got it right.
  7. Buck Melanoma

    Buck Melanoma Guest

    Yeah, but if anything questionable went OUR way, we'd have Donk fans saying that he gave one to us to atone for his sin.

    I'll take who we're getting. :yes:
  8. Savage Lizard

    Savage Lizard Charger fan at 7000'

    Jul 12, 2007
    I don't hate the guy, I still think he is one of the better officials around. I respect that he owned it instead of trying to make an excuse or something.
  9. !~BOLT~!

    !~BOLT~! Well-Known Member

    Oct 2, 2006
    Did they ever mention what team was in first the longest for the season without making the playoffs? I assume 16 weeks is the record?

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