The Joey Bosa foot injury isn’t the end of the world, but it felt like it. We can blame the Chargers for an awful lot. When Bosa was a rookie, everyone questioned whether he should have been picked so high. It came out later that Telesco wanted him all along. Then the team seemed to be biting their nose to spite their face by refusing to budge on “offset language.” When Bosa’s mom suggested her son pull an “Eli Manning,” people went batshit. When Bosa pulled a hamstring and missed the first four games, the blame went clearly on The Organization for fucking up his rookie year. It was also very possible that he could have helped them during that 1-3 start. He sure could have helped get a stop in Indy or maybe avoid the meltdown against the Saints.
Now it’s two seasons later and the kid is justifiably a superstar. He got hurt in drills on August 7 and we were all told it was no big deal. Before the Saints preseason game, Lynn said he’d have been ready if the game had counted and that he’d definitely be out there against KC. Then he’s limited in Wednesday’s practice and held out Thursday. When he’s got the walking boot on yesterday, all hell breaks look and then he’s declared out for Sunday. It’s not unusual for “gamesmanship,” but any Charger fans fears its all happening once again. I’ve watched the Mets mishandle injury after injury, so I also assume that The Organization has once again messed up.
The story we hear now is that the original injury healed but he had a different injury on the same foot occur at Thursday’s practice. The Chargers also put a claim on some Cleveland waiver wire scrub so now we wonder how long he could be out. Yeah, it’s only the first game but its as important a first game as they’ve had in a while. In fact, I can remember an opener when I felt so much was riding on the outcome. Maybe after all the cuts and seemingly thrifty signings in the summer of 1994, I felt there was so much at stake. Ironically, Bobby Beathard will be honored tomorrow and Stan Humphries will fire the cannon to start things off. Does that mean good things are coming for this team?
They haven’t beaten KC since that miracle in 2013. If they had won in 2014 or 2017, they would have probably had two more playoff seasons. Those games were at Arrowhead, but this is a “home game.” I use the quotes because LA is clearly not down with the Bolts. It’s a fair weather town, but so was San Diego to an extent. Obviously, the place was packed when games meant something. I have always stood up for the The Legion Of The Lightning Bolt that resided within the city limits. But I’ve also had many San Diegans tell me how much other shit there is to do in that great city. My point is that it’s not all about LA being a shit football town and San Diego being a perfect venue. But I’ve been through this before many times. My point is that I do think the fans will come out if they start winning. Will they be “real fans?” I agree with Melvin Gordon that should they actually make a playoff run that SOME San Diegans would assume their rightful place within the hordes of supporters. They would certainly deserve it.
But those who still know and care about this team are still on the fence about these being the same old Chargers. I’m not talking about the “Spanos Curse.” Dean is as douchy as Fred Wilpon or James Dolan. They aren’t cursed for moving. Do people forget the “San Diego Sports Curse?” I won’t post the links, you know what I’m talking about. My point is that you should worry about the Chargers because they are the Chargers and not because of the city they play in. We also know what I’m talking about.
So if we can separate from the “Bosa’s going on IR fears,” lets look at this team and this game. It IS that important. The Chiefs have been beatable to whoever meets them in the playoffs but not to the Bolts and that has been the biggest reason the Chargers themselves have not made the postseason themselves. They NEED this game and whatever you think about “The Hub,” it’s gotta be better than starting in Arrowhead, right? Mahomes is an unknown and it would have been better to have Bosa in his face, no doubt. But Ingram has proved a lot of people, myself included, wrong and become an every down superstar. You could argue that he was as important as Bosa last season. The rookies upfront have also looked great, but preseason is meaningless now. No one expected Verrett to be out there, so I don’t think he’s a loss tomorrow. James looks like the real deal but Hill and Hunt destroyed us last season.
If they don’t wrap up on tackles or drop interceptions, they’ll be fucked and that will have nothing to do with Joey Bosa being out. It will also have nothing to do with Hunter Henry being out. I have been saying all summer that I love the idea of bringing Antonio Gates back. He’s always been a flawed Hall of Famer, even at his peak. I can remember drops in the ’06 and ’09 playoff games that might have made the difference. He also caught a TD on a gift 4th down in ’04 that should have made the difference. On offense, this team seems to have lots of weapons. Travis Benjamin is a bonehead and his safety in New England will never be forgotten. But if Williams is as good as he’s looked and Allen can stay healthy, then he and Tyrell can be the complimentary guys they are intended to be.
Gordon should be really helped if Ekler can contribute AND hold onto the ball. I know he broke his hand on that play in KC. But if the Chargers had fought through a possibly illegal play on that fumbled punt and if Henry hadn’t been cheapshotted and…I could go on and on. Marty Caswell, who has taken an unnecessary beating on Twitter, suggested that this game comes down to kicking once again. Of course, it would be great if it didn’t come down to that but that just wouldn’t be the Chargers.
So there you have it. Today is sadly the 1 year anniversary of the day my dad passed away. Things have gotten better, but it still sucks. My dad didn’t love football, but he loved me and suffered through a lot of Chargers games with me. I miss you dad, but I’ll try to make you proud.
See you out there on Sunday.