There is something oddly counter-intuitive about being thankful for having a bad record in a division filled with bad records. For the San Diego Chargers in the AFC West, this season has been a sad state of affairs. The Bolts haven’t been the only bad team in the division with a 6-9 record and in second place, but that says both good and bad things about the future of this team. Here are the reasons for both optimism and pessimism as the Chargers get ready for the offseason and rebuilding their depleted roster.
Let’s start out on the bright side of things, shall we? Given the fact that the Chargers are in a dreadful division, at least that means they play against bad teams on a regular basis. The tiebreaker in deciding the order of selection in the NFL Draft is collective opponents’ winning percentage and the Bolts are one of the lowest in the league in that category. Only the Cincinnati Bengals, Indianapolis Colts, and Atlanta Falcons have a lower opponents’ winning percentage than the Chargers’ .458 number.
As of right now, the Bolts would own the 10th overall pick of the draft. The team can end up selecting anywhere between 6-10 overall with a loss and 10-13 with a victory on Sunday against the Oakland Raiders. Unfortunately at this point, cheering for a loss is about all fans have left in order to enhance the team’s draft position.
And here is where the negativity kicks in as if there are only three other teams with opposing winning percentages worse than the Bolts and they are all making the playoffs, just what does that say about the state of this team? With a schedule that easy on a yearly basis against teams that have been less than competitive for quite a while, why do the Chargers find themselves mired in mediocrity season after demoralizing season?
Some may point to the coaching, but in reality, the players on the field have more to do with this team’s struggles than anything. Of course the two share a symbiotic relationship and must have a harmonious existence to experience success, but ultimately the players out on the field win and lose games. This team needs a lot more than just a philosophical change on the sidelines in order to turn this ship around.
Having a top ten draft pick would certainly help to replenish some talent, but the Chargers really need to see some significant upgrades at a number of different areas. Let’s hope that another loss this weekend will help the Bolts get back into the top 10 of the draft order for the first time since they selected Eli Manning number one overall in 2004.
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