Chargers down, not out

Six points – that was the difference in a loss to the New York Jets and the NFL world is already telling the tale of mediocrity for the San Diego Chargers. Hey, we are still tied for first. <br><br> The Mighty Chiefs have lost two straight and are still touted for the playoffs. That is what reputation gives you.

This isn't a replay of last week's game; I was there. By now everyone who was not has heard the stories. Let me say there were not more Jets fans then Charger fans (that is a first). We were loud and representing (when we had something to cheer for). There were packs of Jets fan spread through out the stadium (If I hear one more J-E-T-S! JETS! JETS! JETS! chant I will commit hari kari).

The Chargers are down this is true, but they are not out. Last year when teams went up 17-0 the Chargers would give up. My first thought, and your too, was here we go again. Then it was 17-7, then 27-7, then 27-21, then 34-21, and finally 34-28.

Yes, we lost.
Yes, the defense looked horrible in the first half (that needs to change).
Yes, Brees had one yard passing in the first half but the game turned into a surprisingly good game and there are a lot of positives to look forward to.

Defense: I don't know what Phillips does in the second half to bring this defense around but he needs to make those changes before they come out of the locker room. The defense has been solid in the second half for two weeks in a row. This is still a new defense but it has the potential to be a stout defense.

Yes, they gave up 34 points but the Jets only had one really long drive against the defense. They had a short field to play with on three turnovers for 17 of those 34 points. The Chargers did not attack as much this week as they did against the Texans.

There were a lot of missed opportunities in takeaways. Three interceptions dropped. Igor Olshansky missed the opportunity to jump on a fumble. It is a long season. This team will get better and this defense will pay dividends under Phillips.

Offense: We all know Brees is not the QB of the future and will admit leaving the game I put the loss squarely on his shoulders but after thinking about it… Two of the four turnovers were truly his fault. The first interception where the only one near the ball was wearing Green, Brees' fault. The fumble, Brees' fault.

The interception when he was tossing to Gates, Gates fault. Why? Gates turned out side when he was supposed to turn in, the ball would have been there if Gates ran the correct route. Speaking of Gates, let's not start complaining about this kid yet. He is still learning. He had 11 passes thrown his way and he caught four. He did not have the big numbers but at least he only had one penalty this week. He is going to get better. He is the number two rated TE in the NFL right now.

The O-line is not the dismal line we had last year. They have only given up two sacks in two games. They will get better the more they work together.

We do need some receivers, Parker and Caldwell are not starters and Osgood is under utilized, being used mostly as a blocker in run situations. On the pass where Brees over threw Gates, Osgood was open in the corner of the end zone. Once the QB's start having more faith in the 6-5 receiver and he gets more reps he could help this team. His size could pay dividends for the young receiver.

Special Teams: The special teams has already look good this year. Scifres has had two balls returned and puts enough air under the ball to give the punt team time to get down the field. Keading is going to be the real deal. He needs more power on kickoffs but he has looked good making both FG attempts and all seven PAT's he has tried. The kick return team is going to be fine with Tim Dwight but they should have kept Welker for the punt returns (too late now he was signed by Miami). The coverage team has been up and down on both kick and punt returns.

The Chargers are down, but they already look better then last year. They are not giving up when they are down. Are they going to the Super Bowl? No. Are they going to make the playoffs? Probably not. Are they going to win more than four games? I think this team can as long as they stay focused and play their game.

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