The Chargers pulled off a winning streak of 13 consecutive games versus the hated Oakland Raiders from 2003 to 2009.
On Sunday, Antonio Gates was left shaking his head in disbelief from the sidelines as he watched the Raiders torch the Chargers on their home field, leading by as many as 31 points in what was a must-win game.
“I’ve never had that feeling. Never experienced it. That was frustrating to watch because it means too much for me, not just to beat the beat the Raiders but to wear that Chargers helmet, to wear that bolt, to represent that bolt, it’s not who we are , it’s not what we stand for. It’s never been like that.”
Gates, who has caught 12 touchdown passes versus the Raiders in his career, suffered a MCL sprain versus the Packer and says he wasn’t close to playing Sunday after not practicing all week. Gates doesn’t have an MRI scheduled (yet) and plans to listen to his body before he decides his next course of action. The Chargers play at Baltimore then home to the Chicago Bears on Monday Night football before their much-needed bye week.
Speaking of injuries, the Chargers got a bit of good news on left guard Orlando Franklin, who was carted off the field for the second time this season after suffering a grade two MCL sprain.
Franklin, who had missed the previous three games with a high ankle sprain in week three was frustrated by yet another injury that will likely sideline him for two to four weeks.
“It’s definitely been frustrating,” said Franklin. “I’m back in that training room again. I mean It’s football, it’s 100% injury rate, that’s just what it is. Unfortunately I’ve been having a rough season when it comes to that. I mean, I played four years in Denver, I started every game. And when I did miss that one game in Denver it was the first game of my career.
“I mean I’ve been out three games and I get this grade two MCL and I really don’t know what. I feel like like we’re on the right track in the way we played in the second half and I’m definitely excited about this team. Unfortunately we lost but we scored 23 points in the fourth quarter and that’s phenomenal in this league. I feel like sky’s the limit and we’ve just got to continue getting better.”
“Nobody wants to be on the bench. I’ve been playing football since I was seven years old. I’ve been playing for 20 years. I’ve missed four games in my life. In 20 years.”
The Chargers offensive line has started just one game together, week one versus the Detroit Lions.