Nos. 2&3: September 7, 1981
The 1981 Chargers were coming off of a trip to the AFC Championship Game the year prior. Out to make a statement, they took things out on the Cleveland Browns.
This game was played in Cleveland and the Chargers just exploded offensively, posting 535 total yards. The Browns kept pace with 419 yards of offense, but the scoreboard didn’t reflect it.
The Chargers defeated the Browns 44-14 on that September day.
Though Dan Fouts had an impressive outing (19-for-25 passing, 330 yards and 3 touchdowns), there were two other players that stood out on that day and will come in at the number two and three spot on this list.
At No. 3, Chuck Muncie ran around, over and through the Browns’ defense on that day, racking up 161 yards on 24 carries and scoring a touchdown. His 161 rushing yards are the most ever for a Chargers’ player in Week 1.
Fouts’ top target that day was Charlie Joiner, one of the best wide receivers in team history. Joiner only caught six passes, but they went for 191 yards. That’s an average of a completely ridiculous 31.8 yards per catch.
This was a strong start to a successful season for the Bolts, leading to two of the most famous playoff games in NFL history. They defeated the Miami Dolphins in the divisional round, a game forever known as the “Epic in Miami”. That led to the “Freezer Bowl” against the Cincinnati Bengals in the conference championship, a game the Chargers unfortunately lost.