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Bad blood likely to color Chargers-Patriots game

Discussion in 'Latest Chargers News & Headlines' started by robdog, Sep 10, 2007.

  1. robdog

    robdog Code Monkey Staff Member Administrator

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    Source: <a href="http://www.nbcsports.com/portal/site/nbcsports/menuitem.6f806e473b4cb158fb00ec22493c2d04/?vgnextoid=147d2129f10f4110VgnVCM10000075c1d240RCRD&amp;vgnextchannel=6f33d5e59df02110VgnVCM100000dc032c03RCRD&amp;vgnextfmt=default" target="_blank">NBC Sports</a>

    <img src="http://photos.signonsandiego.com/gallery1.5/albums/070114ne-playoff/KC_ChargersNE267167x1190c.jpg" title="Chargers vs Patriots 2006 Playoffs" alt="Chargers vs Patriots 2006 Playoffs" height="206" width="299" />

    By Tom Curren

    <strong>EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J</strong>. -- The Chargers' "Guys We Hate From the Patriots" list is a long one.

    The reason for the bad blood? In the AFC Divisional playoffs in January, San Diego outplayed the Patriots in the AFC Divisional Playoffs but failed to outthink them and lost, 24-21.

    Then it got fun.

    Patriots corner Ellis Hobbs stood in the middle of the field and mocked the "Lights Out" dance of Chargers linebacker Shawne Merriman. Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers shrieked that Hobbs had a nerve since he was "the sorriest corner in the league!" The Patriots' Troy Brown and Vince Wilfork were right there with Hobbs in mocking Merriman and after the game, celebrated good guy LaDainian Tomlinson said the lack of class started at the top with head coach Bill Belichick.

    No Patriot was more in the Chargers face than Rosevelt Colvin. After the game, the linebacker stood outside the Chargers' locker room and bellowed silliness about the power being shut off and lights being turned out for good.

    As fate and the schedule-maker would have it, the Chargers and Patriots meet Sunday night at Gillette Stadium. (Coverage begins on NBC at 7 p.m. ET)

    After the Patriots dispatched the Jets, 38-14, Colvin looked ahead to the Chargers.

    "I think they would definitely be upset about what transpired (in last year's playoffs)," Colvin said. "But it's a new season. They've got a different team and a different coaching staff. We have a different team."

    New and improved. Impressive enough so that, by 4 p.m., the Patriots were already being hailed as the league's best team. Which is the same deal the Colts enjoyed Friday morning after they dissected the Saints.

    Meanwhile, the Chargers didn't get the same Sunday billing because LT only gained 25 yards against the Bears on Sunday and San Diego merely beat the defending NFC champs, 14-3.

    Two things to remember though: 1) The speed in the Bears' 4-3 defense is a bad match-up for Tomlinson. The premium in the Patriots' 3-4 set is on size and Tomlinson's feasted on them. 2) The Chargers also got screwed out of a touchdown by a blown call by the refs on Sunday and the final should have been 21-3.

    The fact is, even though the Colts beat the Patriots in the AFC Championship and the Patriots beat the Chargers the week before that, the most talented team in football in 2006 was San Diego. And it wasn't really that close.

    So be impressed by New England's domination of New York but don't be fooled. Tom Brady won't have time next Sunday to stand in the pocket and show baby pictures to the referee before unleashing downfield to Randy Moss. Pats center Dan Koppen won't be flipping Chargers nose tackle Jamal Williams to the ground the way he did with DeWayne Robertson on one play Sunday. New England's fighting up a class against a San Diego team that, in the minds of the Patriots, caved, 41-17, the last time it visited Gillette.

    "We're fortunate we don't have to take the trip out West and we don't have to take the flight," said Colvin. "But the challenges they present offensively, defensively and on special teams is almost unmatched in the league."
     

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