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The world of sports is a fickle place.
When the Chargers were 2-0 they were headed straight for the Super Bowl. When they had the dismal loss against the Falcons they weren’t even going to make it into the playoffs. After they demolished the Chiefs in Arrowhead, again things were looking up.
After this most recent loss to the Saints, talk is swirling that San Diego can’t close out a game.
The Bolts led the game 24-21 going into the fourth quarter when quarterback Drew Brees led New Orleans to 10 unanswered points. Final score 31-24 Saints.
Emotionally, it is easy to say the Chargers cannot close a game because those losses are so raw and painful. But for many years, fans would say that San Diego didn’t even show up until the second half.
“There a lot of theories about our team,” head coach Norv Turner said. “You break it down and look at the facts. I care about facts, not conjecture. It’s not about an attitude because when we struggle we’re ‘soft,’ or ‘we can’t finish,’ those are theories that are good to write about but it’s not about that.”
Here are some facts:
Quarterback Philip Rivers has an overall quarterback rating of 93.1 so far this year. In the first half of this year’s game his rating is 101.9, in the second half it is 82.8.
As a team, the Chargers convert on third downs 41% of the time, that is 10th in the NFL. Their defense is ranked 21st in the league for points scored by an opponent in the second half.
While Turner said he doesn’t want to talk about conjecture, he does praise the attitude of his team after the disappointing loss in New Orleans.
“This group is up to the task of getting done what we need to get done,” Turner said. “And like I said, they are excited about the football game.”
Their next task comes Monday night when quarterback Peyton Manning and the divisional rival Broncos come to the Q.