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LT can feel season slipping away

Discussion in 'Latest Chargers News & Headlines' started by robdog, Nov 17, 2008.

  1. robdog

    robdog Code Monkey Staff Member Administrator

    Jun 29, 2009
    Source: <a href="http://sports.yahoo.com/nfl/news?slug=ap-chargerslose&amp;prov=ap&amp;type=lgns" target="_blank">Associated Press</a>

    By Bernie Wilson

    <a href="http://cache.daylife.com/imageserve/0dcx2Hz9ri1tE/610x.jpg"><img class="alignleft" title="LaDainian Tomlinson" src="http://cache.daylife.com/imageserve/0dcx2Hz9ri1tE/610x.jpg" alt="" width="233" height="157" /></a>

    SAN DIEGO (AP)-The underachieving San Diego Chargers had a long, quiet plane ride home from Pittsburgh, the scene of their latest debacle.

    "Nobody said much. I don't even know how to take that," star running back LaDainian Tomlinson.

    Sunday's bizarre 11-10 loss to the Steelers left the two-time defending AFC West champion Chargers 4-6 and two games behind Denver with six games left.

    Tomlinson said he spent the flight thinking about the first 10 games "and where do we go from here and our chances. All those things were running through my mind and that was probably what was running though everybody else's minds. That's probably the reason it was so quiet on that flight."

    Remember, these guys were once considered Super Bowl favorites.

    Tomlinson said he can feel the season slipping away.

    "I really do. We are two games back. We're not out of it but its like, the blown opportunities we keep on talking about, when we could have been easily tied with Denver right now. And whenever you keep blowing opportunities, then at some point, as they say, opportunities don't come about anymore. It's like when the opportunity comes, you open the door and take it. If you don't, it passes you by and goes to someone else."

    Although the Chargers are teetering on the brink of a monumental collapse, Tomlinson thinks there's still a chance.

    "I wouldn't go that far to say we are done because anything can happen with six games. It does look slim but we're not done yet."

    Tomlinson is having the worst season of his eight-year career.

    He was held to 57 yards on 18 carries by the Steelers, although he did score his first touchdown rushing in six games. Slowed earlier in the season by a toe injury, the two-time defending NFL rushing champion and 2006 NFL MVP has only 686 yards and a per-carry average of 3.8 yards. He's on pace to finish with 1,098 yards. His previous lowest total was 1,236 yards as a rookie in 2001, when he averaged 3.6 yards per carry.

    He's rushed for five TDs and caught one scoring pass. Two seasons ago, he set NFL records with 31 touchdowns overall, 28 on the ground.

    The Chargers have won only two playoff games in his career, and this year they might not even make it to January.

    "Each year is another season gone and I'll be the first to tell you that I am running out of time. I don't know how many more years I'm going to play, but at this point you just hope for the best. That is all I can really say about it. You just hope that things, if they don't turn out the way they should this year or if we don't make it into the playoffs, you question what's next and that's just where I am right now."

    The Chargers were outgained 410 yards to 213. Philip Rivers was intercepted twice and fumbled in the end zone, which resulted in a safety.

    Still, the Steelers were held without a touchdown.

    "The offense should have taken care of that game-it was on us," Tomlinson said.

    "We put together two good drives but didn't finish them," Rivers said. "Certainly when you look at the way that game went, we didn't have many opportunities but we had enough. If we had made the best of them and managed the opportunities we had instead of making those negative plays, certainly the defense put us in a position to win the game."

    The Chargers are hoping a three-game homestand will save them. Up first are Peyton Manning and the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday night. The Chargers have won three straight against the Colts, including a 28-24 playoff win last season.

    "This will tell the story," Rivers said. "What will December mean? Obviously we played the Colts here last year, didn't play very well and won, and then played really well and won in the playoff game. They're kind of getting hot right now so they'll be tough. But I think we'll be ready to go."

    Manning threw a franchise-record six interceptions against the Chargers on Nov. 11, 2007. San Diego escaped with a 23-21 win only because Adam Vinatieri pushed a 29-yard field goal attempt wide right with 1:31 left.

    "We're two games back, but the team we're two games back from, we get to play them once," Rivers said. "You just hope you can gain enough ground where that game will mean everything."

    The Chargers host the Broncos in the regular-season finale on Dec. 28. Will they still have something to play for by then?

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