2008 San Diego Chargers – The Playoffs Start Early

Tuesday, December 23, 2008, 10:58 —by Chargers Blogger
This item was posted in San Diego Chargers Blog category and has 0 Comments so far.

After a first half that saw virtually everything go their way, the third quarter brought a turn in the Chargers’ fortunes. Tampa Bay started the second half with a 13-play, 78-yard drive that ended with a seven-yard touchdown run by Garcia to close the gap to three at 20-17. 

 Then, late in the third frame, the Bolts took back the lead on the first play of the last quarter when Phillip Rivers hit Antonio Gates on a rollout pass for a five-yard score to finish a crucial 12-play, 63-yard drive that put them back in the lead, 27-24.

After Shaun Phillips and Jyles Tucker had a combined sack of Garcia on third down, The Bucs punted the ball away to dangerous man, Darren Sproles, who made them pay. His 43-yard punt return put the Bolts in a great position, and four plays later Sproles caught a screen pass from Rivers and took it 32 yards down the field for a touchdown. Sproles’ score put the Chargers up 34-24 with 7:42 remaining.  

“Darren has been such a big part of everything we do,” Turner said. “He’s had big returns. Our guys know when LT or Sproles get a screen out there, if they’ll get out in front we’ve got guys who can make plays with the ball. He continues to do it.”

The Chargers weren’t done. Garcia had Tampa Bay on the move trying to make a game of it when his third-down pass was batted up by Quentin Jammer and intercepted by Antonio Cason. The Bolts’ rookie returned the INT 59-yards return of his second career interception as the Chargers walked away with a 41-21 win. 

Two weeks ago the Chargers were sitting at 5-8 in need of back-to-back wins as well as consecutive losses by Denver in order to have a chance at the playoffs. Now that’s exactly what they face.

“After everything that’s happened this season, we’ve got an opportunity to win this division,” Gates said.  “We’ve taken care of business the last three weeks and it all comes down to next week against Denver.”

The Playoffs unofficially start next week on the last game of the season.  Denver’s QB Jay Cutler and Phillip Rivers hate each other, LT has something to prove, and Norv Turner might have something to get excited about.  The last time they played, it was in Denver and the Chargers got screwed on a few calls.  Now, there is only one game to play and it is for everything.  Fair or not, it will be a great game.

Photos from www.chargers.com

Popularity: 4% [?]

Voice Your Opinions. Join Today.
You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

Leave a Reply