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Chargers, Colts headed in opposite directions

San Diego Chargers v Seattle Seahawks Getty Images

A week ago, we made the case that this Chargers team could be better than last year’s 13-3 squad.  After Sunday night’s 36-14 destruction of the Colts, you could argue the Chargers are playing better than any team in the league.

The Chargers outscored the Colts 20-0 in the second half and picked off four Peyton Manning passes in the victory.  The Chargers battered Manning all night, reminding viewers this team is about much more than Philip Rivers.

Mike Tolbert rushed for 103 yards and scored his ninth touchdown of the year.  Linebacker Kevin Burnett and safety Eric Weddle both scored touchdowns on interceptions.  Consider it a very good sign the Chargers could win a blowout in Lucas Oil Stadium without Rivers topping 200 yards.

While the Chargers are making their typical late season run, these Colts look unfamiliar.  The running game has gone from terrible to unprofessional.  (They had 24 yards on 13 carries.)  The offensive line can’t protect Manning for long, and  Manning’s receivers are either hurt or making uncharacteristic mistakes.   The Colts defense is missing too many playmakers.

This was the largest home loss for the Colts in the Peyton Manning era.  Their seven-season streak of 12 wins is over.    For the first time since 2001, it’s possible they may miss the playoffs.   (If another AFC South team can step up.)

You aren’t always what your record says you are.

Sunday night’s game showed the 6-5 Chargers are playing dominant football, while the 6-5 Colts are just trying to survive.

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39 Responses to “Chargers, Colts headed in opposite directions”
  1. natelan says: Nov 29, 2010 12:11 AM

    If you zoom in close on Peyton’s helmet, there’s a sticker which reads “property of the San Diego Chargers.”

    You’re welcome, Jacksonville.

  2. ingloriousmaster says: Nov 29, 2010 12:15 AM

    if Tom Brady started for these colts they would be 8-3 at worst

  3. tommytd says: Nov 29, 2010 12:16 AM

    Might be time for the Colts to rest their guys for the playoffs! LOL

  4. sickpuppyz says: Nov 29, 2010 12:17 AM

    the chargers couldn’t score an offensive td for 3 quarters. luckily for them, you move manning of his spot an he throws picks. first int looked almost identical to the one that sealed the game vs pats. colts wouldn’t make the play offs if any of the other division teams would be decent.

  5. hobartbaker says: Nov 29, 2010 12:18 AM

    AhhCHEE! is going to rip the Potatohead a new one when he gets back home.

  6. richm2256 says: Nov 29, 2010 12:30 AM

    So the mighty Chargers – at 6 and 5 – are the “hot” team of the week, eh? Last week it was Atlanta, week before it was Phuilly, and on and on and on. Meanwhile, the Patriots keep rolling on, barely being noticed.

  7. freedomispopular says: Nov 29, 2010 12:41 AM

    And this is what separates Brady from Manning. While Brady has a team surrounding him, Manning stands alone.

  8. Bearfan54 says: Nov 29, 2010 12:46 AM

    Peyton Manning can explode a football whith only his mind while staring at it intensly. Seriously

  9. boltschick says: Nov 29, 2010 12:50 AM

    If the Chargers are so great why do you have them at #14 in your rankings….”Playing better than any team in the league right now”. Put your rankings where your mouth is.

  10. murraysons says: Nov 29, 2010 12:50 AM

    Tom Brady has played with tons of no names, with as much or more success than Manning, but where is the praise? nobody talks about Belichick’s coaching a rebuilding team to a 9-2 record, or Brady’s ability to make anyone look good. Peyton is very good but gets too much love from the national media. Brady is better.

  11. darthvader89 says: Nov 29, 2010 12:52 AM

    Soon Peyton Manning and the AFC South will belong to the Jags.

  12. lance19 says: Nov 29, 2010 12:54 AM

    He kept making the “Sad Eli” face.

  13. hcgraves says: Nov 29, 2010 12:54 AM

    I feel bad for the Colts they have so many injuries to overcome. To say they are headed in opposite direction of the Chargers i think is inaccurate. They actually have overachieved this season with all the injuries to great players most teams would be 4-7 at best, yet they are stillin the playoff hunt.

  14. jaggedmark says: Nov 29, 2010 12:54 AM

    Peyton’s career 3rd game with 2 ints returned for TDs.

    Greatest huh?

  15. sirsprague says: Nov 29, 2010 1:01 AM

    Not to mention those Chargers have a kick-ass theme song. San Diego Super Chargers! Go local sports team!

    (Now despite living in Los Angeles, I’m still a Bills homer, so I’ll have to rank their song just below the Bills Shout song and Talkin’ Proud)

  16. thetooloftools says: Nov 29, 2010 1:51 AM

    stop with the drama.
    nothing starts till the playoffs.
    that is where heads are chopped off.

  17. Bubby Brister says: Nov 29, 2010 1:51 AM

    They’ll win out, everybody will call them things like “the best team in the league” and “team nobody wants to play in the playoffs”, and then they’ll promptly lose a Wild Card game to the Jets, Patriots, Steelers or Ravens. This stuff is like clockwork.

  18. jvillenole says: Nov 29, 2010 1:53 AM

    @natelan

    “You’re welcome, Jacksonville.”

    Consider this a very big “thank you.”

  19. pigpenrapeswomen says: Nov 29, 2010 1:57 AM

    Peyton Manning is an overrated sack of crap who always blames everyone else for his own mistakes. This couldn’t have happened to a more annoying person.

  20. sdfred1220 says: Nov 29, 2010 3:07 AM

    Anybody can talk all they want about the Chargers’ 6-5 record, but if we have eliminated the special teams’ gaffes and can continue to dominate with the number 1 offense and number 1 defense (only team in NFL history to hold such rank after 11 games), who is going to beat us?

    Hopefully we can make the playoffs (very little margin for error with KC being a surprise) and if we do, watch out! We can beat anybody, and I know we can lose to anybody. OMG we lost to the lowly Raiders this year. Not next week though.

  21. artrooney says: Nov 29, 2010 3:39 AM

    Peyton continues to prove why he’s the most overrated quarterback in NFL history.

  22. foobarfoofoo says: Nov 29, 2010 4:31 AM

    Looks like we are headed for Patriots at Chargers in the Wild Card round?

    Chargers win division plus Pats finish second …

    I do hope the Patriots win the division and believe they will beat the Jets next week, but it looks like a strength of victory tiebreaker will decide the AFC East???

  23. hooterdawg says: Nov 29, 2010 6:13 AM

    The NFL has Patriot fans right where they want them: typically arrogant world beaters until they are one and done in the playoffs.

  24. stanklepoot says: Nov 29, 2010 6:39 AM

    Can we petition the sports writers and talking heads to retire the “Wow, Manning is doing so much with so little” line now?Over the last 4 weeks it simply hasn’t been true.

    1. Eagles game: 2 picks, including a pick to seal a loss for the Colts.

    2. Bengals game: 185 yards and no TDs. Colts won because Palmer threw a pick 6.

    3. Pats game: 3 picks, including another pick to seal the loss.

    4. Chargers game: 4 picks (including 2 returned for TDs) and a fumble.

    If any writer or tv analyst continues to mention Peyton as one of their top MVP candidates, it’s an indictment of that writer or analyst and the manner in which the award is decided. Manning has had some great seasons, but this is simply not one of them.

  25. 8man says: Nov 29, 2010 7:04 AM

    It’s quite possible both of these teams could still win their divisions. Indy, because no one else in the South is good enough, and SD because KC is probably too young to pull it off.

  26. laxer37 says: Nov 29, 2010 7:42 AM

    The nice cozy dome they played in last night won’t be availble when they travel to New England, New York, Baltimore, or Pittsburgh for the playoffs.

    And we already know how this team fizzles in cold weather.

  27. Rosenthals Speling Instrukter says: Nov 29, 2010 7:45 AM

    The parade will be sweet in the SD.

    All of a sudden the Manning vs. Brady argument becomes Manning vs. Brady vs. Rivers.

    Also Weddle for Prez.

    @ sirsprague: Thunderbolts and lightning, rain down from the sky……..

  28. pigpenrapeswomen says: Nov 29, 2010 8:14 AM

    Peyton Manning is the most overrated athlete in world history!

  29. pukey60 says: Nov 29, 2010 8:49 AM

    Peyton Mannings “look” after he throws a pick for TD coming off the field is the best mug shot in sports. It kind of reminds me of Danny Ainges incredulous look every time he was called for a foul.

    Let’s not cry for #18 folks, he’s very rich man and is about to get a lot richer.

  30. jjackwagon says: Nov 29, 2010 8:58 AM

    Chargers have a very realistic chance to win their division now. They should win out unless they go early on the normal San Diego Ch–Choke.

  31. semperfi24 says: Nov 29, 2010 9:06 AM

    Colts fans 2006:
    “That Pats dynasty is over, they are on the decline…”

    Colts fans 2007:
    “That Pats dynasty is over, they are on the decline…”

    Colts fans 2008:
    “That Pats dynasty is over, they are on the decline…”

    Colts fans 2009:
    “That Pats dynasty is over, they are on the decline…”

    Colts fans 2010:
    “That Pats dynasty is over, they are on the decline…”

    LMFAO, if you say it enough times, eventually it will be true, right? The only difference between the Colts and Pats, is when the Pats rebuild, they still win….Colts are done

  32. kellyb9 says: Nov 29, 2010 9:32 AM

    Yeah – Manning has nobody around him… Starting the season he would have had Reggie Wayne, Joseph Addai, Dallas Clark, Anthony Gonzalez, and Donald Brown. Its must be tough to field a team with all those 1st round draft picks on offense. Could we please give up the Peyton Manning against the world arguments? Brady has weapons now, but its a direct result of not being able to beat the Colts a few years back with Reche Caldwell, Jabar Gaffney, and Laurence Maroney.

  33. billsgotballs says: Nov 29, 2010 9:33 AM

    @ freedomispopular:
    “And this is what separates Brady from Manning. While Brady has a team surrounding him, Manning stands alone.”

    You gotta be kidding. This is the team Brady has surrounding him: Deion Branch (retread; dude caught a fish in four years in Seattle), Wes Welker (quality guy still rehabbing). Now let’s look at the rest of the offense: Tate (rookie), Gronkowski (rookie), Crumpler (aging vet: the tank’s only one tick above “E”), Hernandez (rookie), Edelman (sophmore and not a starter even in this no name WR corps), Woodhead (couldn’t stay on the Jets practice squad), Sammy Morris (who?!), Green-Ellis (“feature back”, LOL), and Fred “Rip van Winkle” Taylor. Yeah, that’s a hell of a team. Don’t even get me started on the D.

    It makes me sick how much pub 18 gets for getting along with rookies, walk-ons, and back-ups as if Brady’s got a team of first-string All-Pro world beaters, but I’ll take it. Brady has done far more with no more of a team than Manning. Yes he’s a great QB, but this year the comparison with Brady is over. Brady is better than Manning. He may not be better than Rivers, but he’s better than Manning.

    Billsgotballs, out!

  34. jasonculhane says: Nov 29, 2010 10:04 AM

    WTF….I saw Bill Polian on this interview and boy I wouldn’t have known that he’s a future hall of famer from watching the talent from this year’s Colts squad….Terrible, Terrible, Terrible. He basically has the worst team in the NFL right now besides Manning, this why I have felt the league has passed him by since 2004. He’s been living on borrowed time.

    Hey, the interceptions? I guess when your trying your ass off and getting killed in the process your butthole puckers up and in your mind you think “Why in the hell am I getting killed for a bunch of washed up coaches, bum receivers and other losers” Just throw it up versus not getting killed. I tell you what…I’m ok with it, why get killed. Wayne, is probably their best receiver but he’s more than likely getting old for today’s game…After that, not much talent.

    Colts fans are kidding themselves if they don’t think that Manning is at the very least THINKING about walking away from this sinking ship….Its sinking. You can’t fix these problems overnight…Overhauling may cause Manning to walk away completely….

  35. all4patriots says: Nov 29, 2010 10:10 AM

    The Colts excuse-making starts at the top, with the team president, coach, and best player all making the same excuses.

    Can you imagine Bill Belichick allowing ANYONE to whine on and on with the “woe is me” injury card? You have 53 roster spots, 8 practice squad spots, and even an emergency “call list” for a reason. Everybody on those lists needs to be ready to play, no excuses. So Wayne and Garcon dropping passes and getting beaten physically by defenders at the line is due to the injury issues? Okay…

    Isn’t it great that these quitters who laid down like dogs last year are getting theirs?

    Awesome.

    It would suck though if they struggle to 9-7 or 8-8 and host the loser of next Monday night’s game on wild card weekend.

  36. hcgraves says: Nov 29, 2010 10:15 AM

    semperfi24 says:
    Nov 29, 2010 9:06 AM
    Colts fans 2006:
    “That Pats dynasty is over, they are on the decline…”

    Colts fans 2007:
    “That Pats dynasty is over, they are on the decline…”

    Colts fans 2008:
    “That Pats dynasty is over, they are on the decline…”

    Colts fans 2009:
    “That Pats dynasty is over, they are on the decline…”

    Colts fans 2010:
    “That Pats dynasty is over, they are on the decline…”

    LMFAO, if you say it enough times, eventually it will be true, right? The only difference between the Colts and Pats, is when the Pats rebuild, they still win….Colts are done

    Lol i can’t remember how many Super Bowls the Patriots have won in those years. Think the answer is zero.

  37. raidersteve413 says: Nov 29, 2010 10:17 AM

    Well all your charger lovin is coming to a end next week

  38. all4patriots says: Nov 29, 2010 11:55 AM

    semperfi: “Lol i can’t remember how many Super Bowls the Patriots have won in those years. Think the answer is zero.”

    That’s the same boat as 29 other NFL teams (zero int he past 3 years), though none of them lost when a soon-to-be-out-of-the-NFL scrub made a one-in-a-million catch after the refs let O-linemen tackle pass rushers by the neck so Eli could wing it.

    How many of those other 29 teams and how many of those last three champions have totally rebuilt their roster and at the same time gone 48-14 overall during their rebuild?

  39. fmwarner says: Nov 29, 2010 2:36 PM

    I can’t believe some of the posters here are making the preposterous argument that the Patriots don’t get talked about. Aside from the Cowboys, and maybe the Steelers in a week where one of them decapitates somebody, no team gets talked about more.

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