Oct 19, 2014; San Diego, CA, USA; San Diego Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers (17) reacts during the fourth quarter against the Kansas City Chiefs at Qualcomm Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports
It’s 1963, San Diego, the Boston Patriots and the San Diego Chargers play in the fourth AFC Championship game at San Diego’s Balboa stadium. Chargers running backs Keith Lincoln (206 yards) and Paul Lowe (94 yards) combined for 300 yards on the ground, while quarterbacks Tobin Rote (173 yards) and John Hadl (132 yards) went for a combined 305 yards in the air. San Diego gained 610 yards of total offense in the title game. The Chargers crushed the Patriots 51-10 that day winning the game, but that is not where this rivalry started. For that story we only need to flash back to 2006.
The last time the 9-3 New England Patriots and the 8-4 San Diego Chargers met was on September 18th of 2011 and the Patriots came out with the win, beating the Chargers at home 35-21. But let’s rewind things a little bit. To the AFC divisional game in 2006, to the game that changed this rivalry for Chargers fans and Charger players alike. It was an exciting game, ending 24-21, the Chargers could have tied it up, but a field goal was missed in the last seconds. At games end, some of the Patriots players went on to the field at the Q, stomped on the Chargers logo and mimicked Shawne Merriman’s lights out dance. Pure disrespect, that enraged everyone present. Most notably, Ladanian Tomlinson (post-game video). This incident is still spoken of to this day and that day marked the birth of the bitter rivalry between San Diego and New England.
The series history of these two teams is 22-15, and two ties. But that was before the fire was lit. Now, this game means more than any other this season for the Bolts and everyone knows it. The hobo-like attire from head coach Bill Belichick and the cheating scandals are but distractions. This game is about what happens on the field eight seasons ago and I predict an exciting matchup between two elite teams.
Never forget and Boltup!