Monday arrives and it’s orange slices for the local NFL squad!
Yep, the Chargers get what every kid playing sports received over the weekend: a juicy snack and a pat on the noggin’.
The Chargers (2-4) came close in Green Bay on Sunday, falling 27-20, when a last-gasp pass was batted down.
It put an sour end to a historic performance by Philip Rivers and we’re not sure whether to laugh or cry.
Rivers is a stud and he proves it on nearly a weekly basis.
The Chargers are a clod in wasting his career by not surrounding him with championship-caliber personnel.
How again did the Chargers, fresh from their pratfall against the Steelers, lose for the second time in seven days as the clock wound down?
It wasn’t Rivers fault as he did something the Padres dream of: reaching 500.
Rivers collected 503 passing yards but he needed 507. Instead his pass to Danny Woodhead was denied and you’re in denial if thinking the Chargers are playoff worthy.
The Chargers have lost two straight and four of their last five. Want to included last season’s final month? They’ve won three times in 10 games.
That’s not exactly a Chargers lightening bolt that is pointing up.
While the team is probably headed north after the season, it is tobogganing south this season at an alarming rate.
Should the Chargers have prevailed at Lambeau Field?
No, because they didn’t.
That’s the harsh reality of the pro game versus the college game versus the high school game versus youth sports.
You are paid to win in the NFL. Gaudy statistics are merely window dressing if not securing the most important goal: a victory.
Wonder what kind of team the Chargers possess? It’s right there in black-and-white: 2-4.
Bill Parcells’ legacy is the most succinct sentence ever spoken in sports history: you are what your record says you are.
The geeks can go bonkers on the offensive and defensive numbers but there are only two digits that mean squat: wins and losses.
Think the Packers’ Aaron Rodgers is bummed because his side ran 49 plays to the Chargers’ 89?
Think Rodgers is beating himself up because his bunch earned 17 first downs to the Chargers’ 32.
Was time on the Chargers’ side? Yep, but winning that battle, 38:00 to 22:00, doesn’t reveal itself in the AFC West standings.
What does is the Chargers staring at a four-game deficit with 10 contests remaining.
Some scoff that the first-place Broncos aren’t playing well, that Peyton Manning is washed up and they got fat on teams that aren’t keen.
Big deal and deal with it: Denver is 6-0, which is a mile high above the Chargers.
Sunday’s Chargers game did deliver a jolt and that was cool. It was entertaining as the Chargers entered Lambeau Field, most thought, primed to absorb a beating.
Instead their performance was among the most exciting in the NFL season. No one could turn the channel, or turn away, as Rivers sliced and diced the undefeated Packers’ defense like that guy hawking kitchen appliances in the late-night infomercial.
But reality has a rude way of pushing everything else aside in the NFL. It always comes down to the scoreboard, and not the auxiliary one maintaining statistics that are meaningful, but then again, mean absolutely nothing.
We could get mean and mention a defense which was thumped for 8 yards per rushing play. Or one that has allowed the most points (161) in the AFC, save Jacksonville and Baltimore.
Or allude to a decorated college running back with four more fumbles than touchdowns in his rookie year.
All that is true, but the biggest takeaway from Sunday is the score. On that account, the Chargers got the short end of what was a very long week.
+ Contact Jay Paris at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at jparis_sports.