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Chargers Team Report - 11/16/09

Discussion in 'Latest Chargers News & Headlines' started by robdog, Nov 17, 2009.

  1. robdog

    robdog Code Monkey Staff Member Administrator

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    Source: <a href="http://sports.yahoo.com/nfl/news?slug=teamreports-2009-nfl-sdg&amp;prov=sportsxchange&amp;type=team_report" target="_blank">Yahoo Sports</a>

    <div class="alignright"><a href="http://photos.signonsandiego.com/albums/080914broncos/SMHchargers290346x0021.jpg"><img title="Vincent Jackson" src="http://photos.signonsandiego.com/albums/080914broncos/SMHchargers290346x0021.jpg" alt="Vincent Jackson" width="172" height="219" /></a></div>

    The Chargers head to Denver, where the Broncos await and first place in the AFC West will be on the line Sunday.

    Fresh from their fourth straight win-a 31-23 conquest of the Eagles-the Chargers are feeling good again.

    It's a long way from that funk they experience a month ago when sitting at 2-3 and three games behind the Broncos. That point was emphasized when the Broncos beat the Chargers in San Diego.

    "I can remember standing right here after the Denver loss and all of you were sitting in about the same spots, and I said that we had to worry about us, focus in, and hopefully look up in a month and be in it," <span>Philip Rivers</span> said. "None of you believed us."

    Everyone believes now as the Chargers have climbed off the mat, no longer having to scrounge for a wild card invitation but setting sights on their fourth straight AFC West title.

    "Being in it doesn't mean anything other than giving ourselves and opportunity," Rivers said. "We have a long way to go but it is nice to put together a string of wins and play better football in a lot of areas and we know the task at hand of going to Denver and winning."

    The Broncos are reeling, losers of three straight and without starting quarterback <span>Kyle Orton.</span> It's expected the Chargers will try to scoot the Broncos out of first place with them forced to play backup Chris Sims.

    But that is a problem for others to solve. Among the reasons the Chargers are back in the mix is because they stopped peaking around the league and just worried about themselves.

    "It's been a lot of great focus and discipline and hard work to put ourselves in it," Rivers said.
    <h3><strong>NOTES, QUOTES</strong></h3>
    <strong>-te A</strong> ntonio Gates had team highs with seven receptions and 78 yards in Sunday's win.

    "He is such a great player and he knows how to play that position so well," coach Norv Turner said.

    <strong>• </strong>RB <span>LaDainian Tomlinson</span> was a motivated player Sunday when his wife informed him before the game she was pregnant with their first child. "She left me a gift in my locker and it said ‘open immediately,' " Tomlinson said. "It was a pregnancy test. It was pretty special."

    Tomlinson turned in his best performance of the season.

    <strong>• </strong>Players and coaches said Sunday's win was the team's most complete game of the season.

    "Absolutely," <span>Shawne Merriman</span> said. "I think this was one of our most well-put together games all the way around with offense, defense and special teams."
    <h3><strong>STRATEGY AND PERSONNEL</strong></h3>
    <strong>Player Notes</strong>

    <strong>• </strong>ILB <span>Tim Dobbins</span> is expected to return this week after missing two games with a knee injury.

    <strong>• </strong>RT <span>Jeromey Clary</span> could be down this week with a sprained ankle.

    <strong>• </strong>C <span>Nick Hardwick</span> suffered a setback last week from an ankle surgery which has kept him out of all but the season opener. Hardwick will try to resume practice later in the week.

    <strong>• </strong>DL <span>Travis Johnson</span> has a chance to practice later in the week with a shoulder injury.

    <strong>• </strong>OLB <span>Jyles Tucker</span> is likely to be out another week with an ankle injury.

    <strong>Report Card Vs</strong> . EAGLES

    <strong>Passing Offense:</strong> A-Philip Rivers missed on five of his 25 passes, collecting 231 yards and two scores. He was able to get the passing game going despite the Eagles being bent on taking away <span>Vincent Jackson.</span> So Rivers turned to other targets and was splendid; Jackson had but one catch. Rivers was sacked twice, but that's not bad against the Eagles' aggressive front.

    <strong>Rushing Offense:</strong> A-Rushing for 119 yards used to be no big deal for the Chargers-well it is now. They entered the game with the NFL's worst running game, but that was before LaDainian Tomlinson stiff-armed Father Time and scooted for two scores and a season-high 96 yards. Tomlinson showed he still has some wiggle, but more importantly, the run-blocking was noticeably better.

    <strong>Pass Defense:</strong> D-Way too soft on the underneath routes and no pass rush-the Charger seldom even blitzed after collecting 15 sacks in the past two games. The result was an unencumbered <span>Donovan McNabb</span> rolling up a whopping 450 passing yards and two touchdowns-his pick came on the Hail Mary to end the game. <span>Brandon Siler</span> and <span>Paul Oliver</span> did get their first career sacks, but there was little pressure on McNabb or his receivers.

    <strong>Rush Defense:</strong> B-With the ease in which McNabb was allowed to throw the ball, there was very little motivation to run. But when the Eagles did, the Chargers looked stout-especially when it had the ball inside the Charger 10 three times and came away with nine points. The Eagles ran for but 29 yards. Siler and <span>Stephen Cooper</span> played well at inside linebacker.

    <strong>Special Teams:</strong> B-The return game of the Eagles is darn good with <span>DeSean Jackson.</span> But the coverage units bottled him up. Not much in the return game, although <span>Darren Sproles</span> did have a 29-yard kickoff return. P <span>Mike Scifres</span> got off a 62-yard bomb at an appropriate time.

    <strong>Coaching:</strong> A-Norv Turner decides to go throwback, returning the Chargers to the days of being under Marty Schottenheimer when LaDainian Tomlinson was the king. He let Tomlinson run early and often and he responded with 96 yards and two scores. Ron Rivera went the bend-but-don't-break route and it worked-although the number of passing yards allowed was way up there. But the defense kept the Eagles from the end zone and that is always job No. 1.
     

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