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Boomer bullish on Bolts

Discussion in 'American Football' started by Johnny Lightning, Dec 18, 2009.

  1. Johnny Lightning

    Johnny Lightning Go Bolts

    Feb 7, 2006
    Friday, December 18, 2009

    Orbitz.com yesterday was offering flights from San Diego to Fort Lauderdale for $310, leaving on Thursday, Feb. 4, and returning Tuesday, Feb. 8. That gives you three nights of partying before the big game and an extra night to enjoy/mourn the result of the Chargers’ appearance in Super Bowl XLIV.
    Hey, it’s not my opinion, it’s Boomer Esiason’s.
    OK, in reality, Esiason didn’t come right out and say the Chargers would get to the Super Bowl. But yesterday he sounded like he would be awfully surprised if they didn’t.
    “I see a high-flying offense; I see Philip Rivers maybe playing the best football of his career; I see big wide receivers and a big old giant tight end that nobody can seem to cover, and I see Norv Turner calling plays to accentuate those mismatches they create each and every week,” said Esiason, the former Super Bowl quarterback for the Cincinnati Bengals now working as a studio analyst for CBS Sports.
    “I know it’s what not you’re used to,” he continued, “especially when you had all those great years with LaDainian Tomlinson having those great numbers, but this is a passing league now. … With the way these rules are set up, and the way these quarterbacks are throwing the ball now, you’re talking about a team that could be playing as good as any team in the league, and that’s including New Orleans, Indianapolis and Minnesota. The reason I say that is their offense is almost unstoppable.”
    When I told Esiason he sounded bullish on the Chargers’ chances of playing deep into the postseason, he said:
    “How could you not be? … Especially when you look at the other teams in the AFC right now and how they’re all kind of hamstrung with some major issue that I think they’re going to have a hard time overcoming.”
    One of those teams is Esiason’s former team, the Bengals, who will play the Chargers on Sunday in CBS’ primary game of the day (although it goes to just 35 percent of the country).
    “They’re as good a running team (as there is) in football,” Esiason said, “they have a very active defense, they have two great cornerbacks … but they can’t throw the ball all of a sudden. So they’re a flawed team.
    “The question is, can the Bengal defense get off the field. Because the Bengal offense is not a quick-strike, high-flying offense. Unless something happens, because this always could happen, but I don’t see this as a 35-34 game. I see it more like a 27-17 game in favor of the Chargers, because the Bengals are having a hard time scoring.”
    The X factor this weekend, of course, is how the Bengals react to the death of teammate Chris Henry. Esiason noted the Bengals “played their (butt) off” earlier this year after the wife of defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer died unexpectedly three days before a game. The Bengals went on the road, upset Baltimore and awarded Zimmer the game ball.
    “Their defense played great that game, so maybe you think, ‘Does a death inspire somebody to reach greater heights; does it motivate somebody to go out and play on behalf of the memory?’” Esiason said.
    “I don’t know how they’re going to play this week, I really don’t. It sounds weird because Chris has been in so much trouble and he’s been written about in so many negative ways, but the people in Cincinnati actually love Chris Henry. The organization loved him, Mike Brown kept giving him chance after chance; he was revered in the locker room; he was very close to all his wide-receiver friends.
    “I don’t know how that nut Chad Ochocinco is going to come out of this. I have no idea what he’s going to do, and I hope he doesn’t do anything stupid this week to sour the memory of Chris Henry, but that’s possible, too.”
    By the way, CBS is doing the Super Bowl this year, and Esiason said, “For us on CBS, if we get Indianapolis or San Diego in the Super Bowl against New Orleans, I think it’ll be great matchup.”
    Yeah, I’d say a few people might want to see Rivers go against Drew Brees.
    “Wouldn’t it be great?” Esiason said. “It’d be unbelievable if you had Drew Brees going against his old team. It would be fantastic.”

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