1. Welcome to San Diego Chargers NFL Football Podcast and Forum!
    Bolt Talk is one of the largest online communities for the San Diego Chargers.
    We host a regular Chargers podcast during the season.

    You are currently viewing our community forums as a guest user.

    Create an Account or

    Having an account grants you additional privileges, such as creating and participating in discussions. Furthermore, we hide most of the ads once you register as a member!

As Chargers win in a laugher, no one enjoys it more than LT

Discussion in 'Chargers Fan Forum' started by Concudan, Dec 29, 2008.

  1. Concudan

    Concudan Caffeinated Commando

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2006
    Messages:
    49,351
    Ratings:
    +4,209
    LaDainian Tomlinson came back to the bench almost bouncing. The spring in his step suggested a shortage of gravity. The hands on his waist conjured a dancer's pose during the Cotton-Eyed Joe.

    “That was the championship belt,” the Chargers' running back said, explaining the pantomime he performed following his third touchdown Sunday night.

    This was an LT we rarely see – giddily demonstrative in the middle of a game – and an LT who had virtually vanished this season. Though his every expression gets overanalyzed, though his sideline demeanor gets deconstructed almost weekly, there was a marked difference in Tomlinson's mood both during and after the Chargers' 52-21 stomping of the Denver Broncos.

    Some of this had to do with the team's improbable run to a division title, some to the lingering animosity that exists between the two teams who competed Sunday night at Qualcomm Stadium. But some of it, indisputably, was a product of Tomlinson being able to remind everyone of what all the fuss has been about for eight remarkable seasons.

    If LT has lost a step, he would appear to have several more in the stockroom.

    “I was at a point where I was finally healthy, and finally had a chance to really show that I've still got it and can still be highly successful when given the opportunity,” Tomlinson said. “It is gratifying to be able to come out here and prove (to) people all the naysayers and what have you that this old man can still run.”

    By his own exalted standards, Tomlinson's 2008 was a season marked more by its trials than its triumphs. His 1,110 rushing yards represented the lowest output of his career and his 3.8-yard average per carry was his worst showing since his rookie season.

    Yet the old man has now completed eight NFL seasons with more career yards than Emmitt Smith or Barry Sanders or Walter Payton had at similar stages, and more rushing touchdowns, period, than anyone except Smith. If he has been outclassed this year by Minnesota's Adrian Peterson and by his former backup, Michael Turner, Tomlinson nonetheless finished as the league's 10th-leading rusher with perhaps his most dazzling performance of the year.

    His three touchdowns – from 1, 4 and 14 yards – were a season high. The 45-yard run that set up the Chargers' fourth touchdown was his longest of the season. The statistical showing – 96 yards on 14 carries – was achieved without benefit of a fourth-quarter carry.

    That's the good news. The bad news is that Tomlinson left the game with what he suspects is a groin pull, and is therefore a question mark for Saturday's playoff opener against Indianapolis. The severity of the injury was not immediately known – Tomlinson said he intends to have an MRI test Monday – but it would not appear to be as ominous as the injuries that befell him during the playoffs last season.

    “I don't know how bad it is,” Tomlinson said. “I think it's just a strain. But I'm not going to jump to conclusions and say anything more about it 'cause I really don't know at this point.”

    He had sensed something slightly wrong early in the second half, but persevered through his painless third touchdown and during his sprightly dance from the end zone to the sideline. But on his next carry, a 1-yard gain, the discomfort resurfaced and Tomlinson soon beat a hasty retreat from the bench to the locker room for a further examination.

    “The weird thing was on the touchdown run, the last one, it didn't bother me,” he said. “I didn't feel it at all. But the last run I had, it seemed like I just felt a little stretch or something in there and wanted to have it checked out and make sure everything was cool.”

    Tomlinson said he could have returned to the game had his services been required, but at this stage of the season there's a good chance that's a smokescreen. How desperately he is needed, too, is subject to interpretation. Human pinball Darren Sproles carried 14 times for 115 yards in Tomlinson's absence. Rookie Jacob Hester added 37 yards and a touchdown. The “three-headed snake,” as Pro Bowl guard Kris Dielman referred to the Chargers' backfield, was responsible for the bulk of a team-record 289 rushing yards.

    With holes such as the Chargers' line created against the Broncos, a lot of backs can look breathtaking. Except, perhaps, for a more consistent pass rush, there could hardly be a more encouraging development for Charger fans as they shift into playoff mode.

    “We physically beat the hell out of them,” Dielman said. “Can't say it any other way. The offensive line played great across the front.”

    No argument there. The Chargers averaged 6.9 yards per crack against the NFL's 27th-ranked run defense.

    “The second half of the season, they seemed like a different team,” Broncos cornerback Dre Bly said. “LT seemed to be playing well. Philip (Rivers) played well all year. Vincent Jackson They were making plays out there.

    “I can't really say until I watch the film, but it looked like they didn't lay up one bit.”

    It looked like the Chargers team Chargers fans had expected in September. It looked like a very dangerous playoff opponent. It looked, to the untrained eye, like vintage LT, only happier.

    “That's your guys' perception,” Dielman said. “LT is the same no matter what. He's a leader. Just because he ain't sitting there jumping up and down doing jumping jacks on the sideline doesn't mean he doesn't care, doesn't mean he's upset. He's a competitor. He's a fighter. He's a leader. He's our man.”

    An old man? Not yet.

    http://www3.signonsandiego.com/stories/2008/dec/29/chargers-sullivan-lt-enjoys-laugher/?chargers
     
  2. Buck Melanoma

    Buck Melanoma Guest

    Ratings:
    +408
    We're gonna kill the Colts. :yes:
     
  3. boltmanbz

    boltmanbz Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2006
    Messages:
    1,369
    Ratings:
    +86
    thats what i like to hear!
     

Share This Page