Josh Lewin, the outstanding play-by-play announcer for the Chargers on radio station Rock 105.3 KIOZ-FM, made an interesting observation about the AFC West.
“It’s like Gladys Knight & the Pips,” he said last weekend. “The Chargers are Gladys Knight, and everyone else is the Pips.”
It would be shocking if any of the Pips among the Denver Broncos, Kansas City Chiefs or Oakland Raiders overtake the Chargers this season in the AFC West.
Perhaps the bigger question is whether the Chargers can begin their season with a 5-0 record … at the very least.
They’re already a 10-point favorite at home for the Sept. 7 season opener at home against Carolina, which will be without leading (and suspended) receiver Steve Smith.
Then comes a Sept. 14 contest at Denver, where the Chargers haven’t had much success over the years but did win 41-3 last season. It won’t hurt that Broncos’ leading receiver Brandon Marshall is suspended for that game.
Week 3 is a Monday Night home game Sept. 22 vs. the New York Jets and some new quarterback named Brett Favre (gee, I think ESPN has ignored him lately!)
The next two weeks feature games at Oakland (Sept. 28) and Miami (Oct. 5).
So far, it appears to be a very soft schedule.
Then comes a Week 6 match up at home on Sunday Night, Oct. 12, vs. the mighty New England Patriots.
The Chargers will be looking to avenge (a) a 2006 playoff loss, (b) a 2007 regular season loss, (c) a 2007-08 postseason loss, or (d) all three losses to the Patriots.
That may be the most important hump of all to get over.