To borrow from the immortal movie Young Frankenstein, it’s alive!!! Just one thing: If you see a Chargers fan walking down the street, do both of you a favor and don’t ask, “Where was that team last week?” You’ll just confuse them, since they won’t know whether you’re talking about the Bolts or the Raiders.
While the Silver & Black were busy coughing up a 24-14 third quarter lead in Jacksonville, we were busy listening to Hank Bauer all but soil himself on 96-7 KCAL Rocks as he recounted the various team defensive records the Bolts were breaking.
The damage played out like this: While posting that 31-0 shutout out, the Chargers held Kansas City to five first downs, 0-fer-11 on third downs, and surrendered 48 rushing yards to the top rushing attack in the NFL.
Better, along with the shutout on defense, the rushing game returned to the Land Of The Living with Ryan Mathews splitting the carries evenly with Mike Tolbert and Darren Sproles mixing thing up and going for nine yards a pop. Given that Phillip Rivers’ dependability seems to bear absolutely no relationship to who he’s throwing to – No Antonio Gates? No Legedu Naane? Vincent Jackson barely serviceable? No Problem! – having a consistent running game makes the final three games, if not a foregone conclusion, well, a mostly foregone conclusion.
After this Thursday’s game against 5-8, but still dangerous, San Francisco, the regular season wraps with roadies against teams with 21 combined losses, Denver and Cincinnati. Assuming the Bolts win out, which they absolutely have to do to see the postseason, the Raiders are no longer an issue. (How does that taste, Raider fan?)
They are, however, a concern, as in, “We’re concerned that the Chiefs’ schedule isn’t much tougher than ours.” K.C.’s final road game is Sunday against a St. Louis team that got worked but good by the defending world champions, but is 6-7 but tied for first place in the NFC Worst, er, West. They close at home against a fading Tennessee team that is currently riding a six-game losing streak and…ta da…Oakland. A loss to the Raiders would also leave the Chiefs with worse conference and division records than the Chargers, a handy thing, what with tiebreakers and all.
A message from Boltheads everywhere to Raider Nation: Why can’t we be friends?