Now that Super Bowl XLVII is in the books, the odds are officially open for the XLVIII version of the NFL’s big game. The San Diego Chargers open with 40 to 1 odds to win the Lombardi trophy next season which right in the middle of the pack level with the likes of the Detroit Lions, Minnesota Vikings, and Indianapolis Colts. Here are some reasons why this is actually a bargain bet for all the gamblers out there.
Philosophically, I expect the Chargers to look like a completely different team in 2013 under new Head Coach Mike McCoy. While McCoy aired it out a bit with Peyton Manning, he still understood the need for balance (something Norv Turner never grasped). Whether it is Ryan Mathews, a back in free agency, or someone new in the draft, the Bolts will be running the ball frequently this coming year. Another addition that makes sense is on the offensive line where Joe D’Alessandris joins the coaching staff from the Buffalo Bills. His experience with free agent guard Andy Levitre could entice the young lineman to migrate westward with his coach.
EMERGING, YOUNG DEFENSE
There really isn’t much to worry about for the Chargers defensively. The team is likely to be even better this year with another season of experience under their belt and having their health to start the year. Adding a piece like free agent cornerback Carey Williams who may be a salary cap casualty for Baltimore Ravens would really put this unit over the top. Just some subtle tweaks in the secondary and John Pagano’s defensive group is on pace to continue their impressive play in 2013.
STILL HAVE SOME TALENT
While the well has dried up a bit, this San Diego team still has some talented players on its roster. The primary task for new General Manager Tom Telesco will be separating the good from the bad. Underachievers like tackle Jeromey Clary, receivers Robert Meachem and Eddie Royal, or linebacker Larry English may be given walking papers. Otherwise this team just needs to stay healthy and develop together as a unit.
A few strategic tweaks here or there could easily have this Chargers team revved up to make a serious push toward the Super Bowl in 2013. That expectation has gone from the norm with this team to a running joke recently, but with a solid offseason under the watch of a new GM, this franchise will be no laughing matter.