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Last one before the real thing

Discussion in 'Latest Chargers News & Headlines' started by robdog, Sep 1, 2005.

  1. robdog

    robdog Code Monkey Staff Member Administrator

    Jun 29, 2009
    Source: <a href="http://www.pe.com/sports/football/stories/PE_Sports_Local_D_chargers_01.13afca7a.html" target="_blank">The Press -Enterprise</a>

    SAN DIEGO - This is what Chargers fans will be paying full price for when the San Francisco 49ers come to Qualcomm Stadium tonight: the team's third game in 12 days, against an opponent that the players and coaches have barely considered.

    "To be honest, we haven't looked at a single tape of them," head coach Marty Schottenheimer said earlier this week. "As a staff, we've begun to focus on Dallas, as I'm sure they have with us."

    In other words, this is the NFL's version of Christmas Eve. The final exhibition game is just the one you have to get through to get to where you really want to be.

    Starting quarterback Drew Brees will play at least a quarter, maybe even a half.

    "Whenever they tell me to get out, I'll get out," he said.

    LaDainian Tomlinson isn't expected to play at all. Antonio Gates can't play, serving the second of his three games on the roster exempt list. Other regulars will play long enough to get a workout and some game sharpness, then will give way to those players still attempting to survive the upcoming roster cutdown from 65 to 53.

    For a veteran, the goal on a night like this is simple.

    "We want to win, obviously, but we want to stay healthy and continue to build on what we've been doing," linebacker Donnie Edwards said.

    The Chargers' new ticket policy, which linked the exhibitions to the prime regular-season games, resulted in a sellout for the Aug. 21 exhibition against St. Louis, though it required the Chargers and San Diego's Channel 8 teaming to purchase enough tickets to lift the television blackout. No such luck tonight. The game didn't sell out by the Monday deadline and will not be shown live in San Diego, Los Angeles or Palm Springs.

    Brees was asked if cutting the exhibition season from four games to, say, two would make any difference.

    "Obviously there are guys who will tell you the preseason is vital, especially with young players and being able to evaluate them," he said. "Are two games enough? If you only played two games, you'd probably have to give the veterans a little more time to prepare for the season."

    But the rhythms of the Chargers camp have already started to change.

    "The way the day is structured, the way practice went, the plays we were going against ... I guess this was the start of our regular-season mode," Edwards said.

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