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An Amazing Post on Bolts/Colts... you must read this.

Discussion in 'Chargers Fan Forum' started by BlueandGold, Jan 9, 2008.

  1. BlueandGold

    BlueandGold The Oracle

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    In my forays across the Charger forum world, it's mostly here on BT that I come across some jaw-dropping analysis. But this pair of posts from Chargers.com (poster onyournrvs) is simply a masterpiece.

    For your reading pleasure:

    Chargers vs Colts I : Debunking the Myths
    by Onyournrvs
     
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  2. BlueandGold

    BlueandGold The Oracle

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    Greetings fellow Chargers fans. As we fast approach the start of Chargers vs Colts II, we have been faced with a sudden onslaught of criticism, both from the media and Colts fans alike, regarding our "miraculous" defeat of the defending Super Bowl Champions on November 11. Being as this game was 9 weeks ago, let me take you back a bit to refresh your memory of the challenges our Chargers team was facing at that time:

    After finishing the '06 season with a league best 14-2 record and a top scoring offense, the Chargers imploded in the first round of the playoffs, choking away a near sure victory to the Patriots. Following this loss, the Chargers lost most of their veteran coaching staff including DC Wade Philips to Dallas and OC Cam Cameron to Miami. Marty Schottenheimer was fired a month later. What many don't realize is that almost the ENTIRE coaching staff was gutted and replaced with new faces.

    Some of these replacements include: Norv Turner, head coach; Ted Cottrell, DC; Clarence Shelmon, OC; Clancy Barone, TE coach; Bill Bradley, secondary coach; Jeff Hurd, strength and conditioning coach, Ron Rivera, inside linebacker coach; Kevin Ross, assistant secondary coach; Matt Simon, running backs coach; Vernon Stephens, assistant strength and conditioning coach. Basically...EVERYONE.

    These changes, coupled with the way that the firing of coach Schottenheimer was handled, led to turmoil in the Chargers locker room. Attempting to adjust to Norv Turner's new offensive schemes and Ted Cottrells defense, the Chargers stumbled early falling to 1-3 by week 4. They bounced back against the division rivals Broncos and managed to scrape their way back to positive by week 8. However, they suffered a humiliating loss to the Vikings the next week and dropped back to 4-4. This was the backdrop against which the defending Super Bowl champion Indianapolis Colts strolled into San Diego with an impressive 7-1 record. The Colts were shocked by the San Diego Chargers and lost 23-21.

    Immediately following the game the excuse-mill began working overtime, contorting facts and spinning half-truths, in a desperate attempt to explain away the unimaginable. There was absolutely no way that the Colts faithful would go quietly into that good night. Here then are the most famous, audacious or flat-out ridiculous excuses that have been brought forth and why they are complete and utter BS.

    1. The Colts Were Decimated By Injuries

    This is, of course, the easiest explanation for the pro-Colts crowd. Due to poor conditioning or weak players (no one likes to say which) the Colts injury report released before the game looked impressive. Nine names graced the list - 5 players on offense and 4 players on defense. Let's take a look at who these players were and assess the impact of their absence.

    -WR Marvin Harrison - the Pro Bowl receiver was injured in week 4 vs the Broncos. This was a significant injury for the Colts. Marvin is their #1 receiver and Manning's favorite target. He was replaced by 5th year veteran receiver Aaron Moorehead.

    -TE Dallas Clark - the tight end missed the Chargers game due to a concussion. Again, this injury was a significant loss for the Colts. He was replaced by TE Bryan Fletcher, a 3rd year veteran and able receiver. 4th year veteran Ben Utecht was lined up as a slot receiver. It should be noted that Clark has NEVER been to a pro bowl and before this season was an average TE in the league.

    Aside from these two veterans, the rest of the injuries to the Colts lineup are questionable at best. Let's take a look:

    -WR Anthony Gonzalez. Anthony is a #3 rookie receiver who before the Chargers game had caught exactly 15 passes in his entire pro football career. From the way some fans and sports writers talked, you'd think he was the next Jerry Rice.

    -LT Daniel Federkeil. Who? Daniel is an undrafted second year backup who had never started a game in his career. What a loss!

    -LT Tony Ugoh. Tony is a first year rookie who started exactly 6 games before being sidelined by a neck injury. His replacement, 2nd year veteran Charlie Johnson, actually had more experience as a lineman than Ugoh did!

    -SS Matt Giordano. Matt is a 3rd year backup to Bob Sanders. Wait, isn't that the same Black Bob Sanders who just won DPOY? Hmmm, Matt or Bob? Who would you pick?

    -LB Freddy Keiaho. Freddy is a second year player out with an ear injury caused by a concussion. He was replaced by Sessions who had 3 tackles, 2 passes defended and 2 interceptions in the game, one of which was the controversial "Inadvertent Whistle" play. More on that later. Not a bad back up if you ask me.

    -LB Tyjuan Hagler. Tyjuan is a 3rd year backup linebacker and special teams player.

    The other injury listed was veteran defensive tackle Raheem Brock. Brock actually suited for the game but didn't play. He was replaced by DE Keyunta Dawson.

    So that's it. These are the studs that the Colts were missing that day. Aside from Harrison and Clark, there's not a whole lot to miss here. But you know, the Chargers were missing players too. Who were these players?

    -C Nick Hardwick. Yes, THE pro bowl center was out with a foot injury. His absence in the middle was clearly evident in the errant snaps of back up Cory Withrow and the lack of push for LT. This was a HUGE injury for the Chargers.

    -DE Luis Castillo. No explanation needed here. Stud defensive end replaced by Jaques Cesaire. There was hardly any pressure from him the entire game and he ended with 3 whole tackles. Woo hoo, WTG Jaques!

    -CB Quentin Jammer. Our #1 cornerback at the time, he was our only hope to contain Reggie Wayne. Thankfully his backup turned out to be pretty good. Who was that? No one you've ever heard of...

    -WR Eric Parker. Parker was the Chargers #1 WR in their league leading 14-2 season. He was placed on injured reserve because of a toe injury. In a key bye-week trade, the Chargers brought in WR Chris chambers - only 2 weeks prior to this game.

    Looking at these two injury reports, I'd say that both teams were suffering very significant injuries. As it turned out, the Chargers had FAR better depth at most of their positions than the Colts did. Antonio Cromartie starting for the injured Jammer and Chris Chambers replacing Eric Parker insured that key positions were not manned by 3rd team scrubs. Thank you AJ Smith!!

    2. Peyton Manning Never Throws 6 Picks. They Weren't His Fault. It Will Never Happen Again.

    This is one of my favorite excuses from Colts fans. It had already been proven twice before that the Chargers 3-4 defense had given Peyton trouble in the previous 2 meetings between these teams. Manning was picked off twice in their '05 meeting and once in their '04 meeting. Peyton was very familiar with throwing the ball to Chargers players already. So, were these 6 interceptions thrown by Manning in this game so spectacularly uncharacteristic as some claim, unlikely to happen again or just flat out not his fault? Let's see, shall we...

    Pick #1 - 11:22 in the first quarter, Manning tries to force a pass to WR Moorehead in the endzone...into QUADRUPLE coverage. Cromartie dives for the ball and comes up with the pick (stay in the endzone, kid!). Now, I know that Manning is arguably the best QB in the league, but COME ON!!! Quadruple coverage? That was just a bonehead mistake on his part. Fault - Manning

    Pick #2 - 9:35 in the first quarter, Manning attempts to dump a pass off to TE Fletcher. Shaun Phillips read Manning the whole way, put himself between Manning and his target, jumped up, tipped the ball and came down with the pick. A tremendous individual effort on the part of Phillips and another bonehead play by Peyton. Fault - Manning

    Pick #3 - 2:16 in the first quarter (is the 1st quarter over yet?!), Manning severely underthrows veteran WR Reggie Wayne. Cromartie makes a turn and dives for the ball, scooping it up like the pro bowl corner he is. Another bonehead play by the best quarterback in the league. Fault - Manning

    Pick #4 - 14:24 in the second quarter. If the 49ers have "The Catch" this is "The Pick". Attempting to throw a pass over Cromartie's head to veteran WR Reggie Wayne (in single coverage mind you), Cro leaps up and makes arguably the most gorgeous one-handed interception in recent history. Manning had to have been stunned to see Cro get up there and make that grab. Bad throw by Peyton. He should have known better than to go to that side. Stupid Peyton. Fault - Manning

    Pick #5 - 11:00 in the third quarter. Manning once again tries to force a pass to WR Moorehead this time into TRIPLE coverage! Instead of Moorehead, he throws the ball straight into the hands of Matt Wilhelm. Stupid, stupid pass. Fault - Manning

    Pick #6 - 0:09 in the fourth quarter. Desperate now for any kind of game winning miracle, Manning heaves the ball to anyone willing to catch it. Apparently the Colts receivers weren't interested, so Clinton Hart went ahead and grabbed it. Desperate times call for stupid throws. Fault - Manning

    The common theme of all of these interceptions is that none of them were forced because of the Colts injuries. They were all the result of either incredibly boneheaded decisions by Manning or incredible athletic talent by the Chargers. This game was no anomaly for the Chargers. They led the league with 30 interceptions, 8 more than the next 2 teams. This Chargers pass defense is amazing and has only gotten better since this game. Look for Peyton to throw at least 2 picks in the next game.

    [continued]
     
  3. BlueandGold

    BlueandGold The Oracle

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    3. Adam Vinatieri, The Clutchest Kicker in History, Will Never Miss 2 Chip-Shot Field Goals Ever Again.

    Adam Vinatieri. 2-time Super Bowl winner. The savior of teams. The goat. Yes, there are not too many kickers with the accuracy of Adam Vinatieri. The guy is as clutch as they come. Yet in their moment of greatest need, Vinatieri missed a "gimme" field goal. Twice. Now, missing 1 field goal might not be something especially noteworthy. But to miss 2? Come on.

    But there were extenuating circumstances. The first kick attempt came at the end of the first half after a catch at the 23 yard line with 16 seconds left on a ticking clock. The Colts rushed their kicking team onto the field fire-drill style for a 42 yard attempt. Hardly a gimme. In the hustle of getting set, and considering the distance, it's not hard to see why the kick sailed off target.

    The second attempt came at the end of the fourth quarter, as a steady drizzle of rain was misting down onto the field. Wet balls do funny things. But the one possibility that intrigues me the most is the notion that Dungy may have iced his own kicker. The Colts were lined up on the 6 for a possible first down attempt. TE Utecht made a sharp movement, inciting a 5-yard penalty before the snap. Adam V trotted out to kick the field goal but had to wait as Dungy argued with the referees about the validity of the penalty call. Meanwhile, there's AV standing there thinking that the game is on the line and he's got to make this kick but he can't because his head coach won't shut the hell up and let him kick. After about a minute, he's finally able to make the attempt. But that's a long time to be waiting, poised to make the game saving kick. Did Dungy ice his own kicker? We'll never know, of course, but this does lead me to the second part of this myth: that such an unlikely event would never happen again.

    Not 1 week later, the Colts found themselves facing the Chiefs. Vinatieri missed his first 2 field goal attempts - from 49 and 38 yards respectively; both well within this pro bowler's range. Wait! What's that you say? He'll never miss two easy field goals in a row again? But look! It happened again the VERY NEXT WEEK.

    Perhaps these events are now weighing heavily upon the minds of the Colts faithful as they face the Chargers in the divisional round. Is it possible he could miss another field goal. You betcher *** he could.

    4. Peyton Manning Overcame A 23 point Deficit and Rallied The Colts Back To Within 2 Points.


    This myth is a bit tricky because the Colts did indeed score 21 unanswered points. But, Manning himself is only responsible for 15 of those 21 points. Manning drove the Colts down the field for 2 touchdowns, the final one coming at the end of the 3rd quarter, capped off by a 2-point conversion. But that's it. In 60 minutes of football, the Colts offense was only able to manage 15 points. It's humerous that Colts fans and sports writers like to poke fun at the fact that the Chargers offense only managed to score 9 points on offense (they missed an extra point attempt. Yeah, that happens every day). Well, okay. But the high-powered Colts offense barely managed 15!! So what!?!

    BTW, how did the Colts manage to score their 3rd touchdown? It was a gift, all wrapped up in shiny paper and a bow. Backed up to their own endzone, Philip Rivers inexplicably dropped the ball into the endzone. He wasn't hit, touched or even pressured. He simply dopped the ball. The Colts jumped on it as it rolled toward the back of the endzone and bada-bing! 6 easy points.

    The key to this score was the 2-point conversion attempt afterward. The Chargers defense stuffed Addai at the line to maintain a narrow 2-point lead. This missed 2-point conversion would come back to haunt the Colts 15 minutes later.

    5. Clint Sessions' Interception Should Have Been On The 6-Yard Line. An Inadvertant Whistle Saved A Sure TD.

    This is a case of wishful thinking at it's best. There is no doubt that Sessions' acrobatic interception in the endzone was highlight worthy. But what everyone seems to be forgetting is that when the inadvertant whistle was blown, EVERYONE BUT Sessions stopped because they thought the play was dead. Had the whistle not been blown, does anyone honestly believe that Hamburger Sessions - all 235 pounds of him - would have outrun the entire Chargers offense for a 94 yard runback? Nope, not even Peyton's own mother. Only when Sessions didn't stop running did LoNeal chase him down and tackle him at the 6 yard line. Yes, bowling ball LoNeal chased down Hamburger Sessions. Had the whistle not been blown, Sessions would have never made it past the 20-yard line which is precisely where they ended up spotting the ball regardless.

    6. Adam Vinatieri Missed The Game Winning Field Goal


    This is perhaps the biggest myth of them all. There is no doubt that Adam V wishes he could have another shot at that kick, but the very idea that it was the "game winner" is beyond laughable. What Adam Vinatieri was attempting was the go ahead score. This missed kick by AV was not the game winner everyone was hoping for, but it would certainly have put the Colts ahead by 1 point. BTW, remember that unlikely missed extra point attempt by the Chargers? Yeah, if that snap isn't flubbed, this is an attempt at a game-tying field goal, not the go-ahead. Regardless, there was still 1:31 on the clock after the ball sailed wide - plenty of time for the Chargers to move the ball into field goal range and kick a go-ahead field goal of their own.

    For those of us with short-term memory loss, the Chargers return team was kicking the Colts coverage team up and down the field all day. In fact, in 6 kicks the Chargers were averaging 34.8 yards per return. Assuming that Adam Vinatieri kicks off to the 10 yard line, that puts the ball at the Chargers' 45 yard line with a little under a minute and a half to move the ball 25 yards - well within Kaeding's range.

    Let's all get this straight - Adam did NOT miss the game winning field goal. Anyone who says this is a moron.

    ----------

    There are others, of course. If there's one thing you can always count on it's that there will always be a steady stream of excuses from teams that lose to opponents they "should" have beat. Let us not forget, however, that over the past 2 seasons the Colts and Chargers share the exact same win/loss record - 25-7. They both have potent offenses, great defenses and MVP leaders. The Colts will go into next week's game slightly favored to win simply by virtue of the fact that they will be playing at home and are the defending Super Bowl champions.

    But don't let ANYONE tell you that the Chargers win over them in week 9 was a fluke.
    (Emphasis mine - B&G)

    The evidence is there for all to see. The Colts were dominated by a defense that has Manning's number and the greatest weakness on the Colts team - their special teams; arguably the worst in the league - was exposed by the Chargers. Nothing has changed since this last game except for the return of some key players for both teams. This upcoming game will look very similar to the last one. A very close defensive battle. The team holding the ball at the final whistle is the one likely to come out the winner. Who will that be? Who knows. But anyone expecting a blow-out this weekend will be very disappointed.
     
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  4. auctoritas

    auctoritas BoltTalker

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    Great post with solid analysis..thanks for posting it over here.
     
  5. Retired Catholic

    Retired Catholic BoltTalker

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    I'll bear this in mind when the alibis start from all the talking heads at ESPN, FAUX, ET AL. over how the Chargers lucked into their win over the Colts, over the fluke of the Chargers winning their second playoff game, over how the overachieving Chargers beat a superior team who was just off their game.
     
  6. Bolt Action

    Bolt Action BoltTalker

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    interesting take on the last game.
     
  7. BOLTS4LIFE

    BOLTS4LIFE Banned Banned

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    Very good article. Thanks BlueandGold!!!!! :tup:


    This time, our offense will show up too!!! :bolt:
     
  8. AnteaterCharger

    AnteaterCharger Calibrating Bolttalk, Podcast by Podcast Staff Member Super Moderator Podcaster

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  9. Electric Chair

    Electric Chair Well-Known Member

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    Fun read. Clark is way more than average in that O.
     
  10. Boltjolt

    Boltjolt Well-Known Member

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    Its a nice read but it is clearly pro Chargers. Sure we like that but if it was supposed to be objective, it didnt look that way.

    It pointed out who played, who didnt but he made it sound like our injured guys were more important than their injured guys, ..........for instance, saying 2nd year LT Charlie Johnson actually had more experience than rookie Tony Ugoh. It is true but Igoh is the starter for a reason............he is better than Johnson. Probably explains why Johnson isnt the starter now.
     
  11. ghost_

    ghost_ BoltTalker

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    great read:tup::tup: on point on just about evrything.
    the only thing i saw diff in that game was that one of those picks i blame on his WR ( Reggie Wayne i think ) for not coming back to the underthrown ball and just standing there and watching Cro pick it off. but thats just the way i saw that play i could be very wrong.




    but the post sure made me feel a lot better:tup::tup:


    maybe Novr should read it to the guys:tup::tup::flag:
     
  12. boltssbbound

    boltssbbound Well-Known Member

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    The main point that comes out about that game is that it was a flukey game on both sides. The Colts want to act like all their negative plays were anomalous but the Chargers play was representative of the team they are. Neither team played well in that game.
     
  13. AnteaterCharger

    AnteaterCharger Calibrating Bolttalk, Podcast by Podcast Staff Member Super Moderator Podcaster

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    Disagree

    We played great the first half
    they played great the second half
     
  14. ETicket

    ETicket Well-Known Member

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    Nice read, but he shouldn't be bagging on Mr. Cesaire. The man has been an excellent back-up for us. 3 tackles in a game is respectable for a DE. Olshansky had just 2 in the Indy game, does that mean he sucks?

    Mr. Cesaire had a nice sack in the playoff game as well! :tup:
    View attachment 683
     

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