The Bolts draw a tough card and are scheduled to play six teams that made the playoffs last season.
The last couple of seasons, the Chargers have gotten off to horrible starts. In 2009, there is a very good chance they'll do it again. After their season-opening win against the Raiders in Oakland on Monday Night Football, San Diego plays three straight games against teams that made the playoffs in 2008. Their home opener is Week 2 against the Ravens. A week later, they host the Dolphins, then head to Pittsburgh to play the defending champion Steelers on NBC's Sunday Night Football. So it looks like they start the year 1-3, maybe 2-2.
After that ,it's a much-needed bye week, then things get easier. The Chargers will host the Broncos on Monday Night Football, hit the road to play the Chiefs, then welcome the Raiders to the Q for another guaranteed win (as a Raider fan, it pains me to say that, but, alas, it's true). Then they head to New York to face Eli Manning and the Giants before hosting another NFC East power, the Eagles.
Then it's two more weeks against division rivals -- at Denver, then and at home against Kansas City, followed by two straight road games at the Browns and the Cowboys. They host the Bengals before making their final road trip of the year, to Tennessee, against the Titans on Christmas Day. It's the first time the Bolts will play on Dec. 25. Finally, they finish the season at home against the Redskins.
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Here's a more conventional look at the schedule, including the preseason.
Sat. Aug. 15 SEATTLE 7 p.m. KFMB/KCBS
Sat. Aug. 22 at Arizona 7 p.m. KFMB/KCBS
Sat. Aug. 29 at Atlanta 5 p.m. CBS
Fri. Sept. 4 SAN FRANCISCO 7 p.m. KFMB/KCBS
Mon. Sept. 14 at Oakland 7:15 p.m. ESPN
Sun. Sept. 20 BALTIMORE 1:15 p.m. CBS
Sun. Sept. 27 MIAMI 1:15 p.m. CBS
Sun. Oct. 4 at Pittsburgh 5:20 p.m. NBC
Sun. Oct. 11 Bye
Mon. Oct. 19 DENVER 5:30 p.m. ESPN
Sun. Oct. 25 at Kansas City 10 a.m. CBS
Sun. Nov. 1 OAKLAND 1:05 p.m. CBS
Sun. Nov. 8 at New York Giants 1:15 p.m. CBS
Sun. Nov. 15 PHILADELPHIA 1:15 p.m. FOX
Sun. Nov. 22 at Denver 1:15 p.m.* CBS
Sun. Nov. 29 KANSAS CITY 1:05 p.m.* CBS
Sun. Dec. 6 at Cleveland 1:05 p.m.* CBS
Sun. Dec. 13 at Dallas 1:15 p.m.* CBS
Sun. Dec. 20 CINCINNATI 1:05 p.m.* CBS
Fri. Dec. 25 at Tennessee 4:30 p.m. NFL Network
Sun. Jan. 3 WASHINGTON 1:15 p.m.* FOX
So when we look at it logically, the Chargers should go 10-6 this season. That's definitely good enough to win the AFC West, host a playoff game and lose in the second or third round again.