2014 NFL Playoffs: 5 Reasons Why You Don’t Want to Face the Chargers

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2014 NFL Playoffs: 5 Reasons Why You Don’t Want to Face the Chargers

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Everyone loves an underdog in sports. Take a look throughout sports history. I bet everyone cheered when David beat up on Goliath. When Rocky Balboa was taking on the huge Russian, Ivan Drago, even the Soviets cheered on the smaller American during the match. If you look at recent sports history, tell me how many people couldn’t help but wish that the Pittsburgh Pirates would make it to the World Series and shock the world!

Those are stories that all of us like to hear because at one point or another all of us have been up against the odds and came through in a big way. That is exactly what the San Diego Chargers are hoping to do this NFL playoff season.

The Chargers needed the almost impossible to happen for them to get into the playoffs. They needed the Baltimore Ravens and Miami Dolphins to both lose in the last two weeks to get in and it happened!

Now that the San Diego Chargers are in the playoffs and have already won their Wild Card playoff game against the Cincinnati Bengals, there cannot be many teams that would want to face this Chargers team.

Everyone in the AFC is focusing on and expecting Peyton Manning or Tom Brady getting back to the Super Bowl. No one had a thought going into Week 16 that the Chargers could even be a contender for the Super Bowl. Now, every team left in the playoffs should be well aware of these guys and scared to take them on.

Here are my reasons why teams are and should be worried about the Chargers. Once you see and read about these reasons you are going to rethink who you picked to win the Super Bowl, especially if you are a fan of any team in the AFC right now.

Dom DeCarlo is a Fantasy blogger for RantSports.com. Follow him @DomDecarlo1, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.

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5. Two Of The Last Three Super Bowl Winners Were Wild Card Teams

Wild Card
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Since the Wild Card was established, there have been seven Wild Card teams that went on to win the Super Bowl. Many teams focus on winning their division so that they can have that home-field advantage that is so important during this time of year. However, if you look at history (and this year’s playoffs) home-field advantage does not always mean you are going to win the game. The Chargers proved that against the Bengals in their playoff game. If that didn’t catch your eye, maybe this will. Two of the last three Super Bowl champions have been Wild Card teams.

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4. Ryan Mathews and Danny Woodhead

running backs
John Rieger-USA Today Sports

Controlling the time of possession is huge when it comes to playoff football. One way of doing that is having an effective running game, and that is one thing that the San Diego Chargers have improved on this season. Ryan Mathews has been one of the biggest surprises of the 2013 season. Mathews was able to stay relatively healthy by his standards for most of the year, and he is finally showing the first-round draft pick potential that the Chargers hoped for when they drafted him.

The second guy of this one-two punch that was arguably the best free-agent signing of the season in Danny Woodhead. Woodhead not only brings a Darren Sproles-type element to this offense, but he brings another important thing to this team: playoff experience. Woodhead has played in many big playoff games for the New England Patriots. If something would happen and Mathews cannot play in the Divisional Round, the Chargers still have a great second option in Woodhead.

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3. They Are a Tough Defense To Play

Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

Defense wins you championships. Ask any fan of a team that has ever won the Super Bowl and they will tell you that that particular team had a better than good defense that season. If you are Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos, this match-up against the Chargers brings many problems your way. In both of their meetings this season, the Chargers defense has given Manning more than he would like to handle. The Chargers love to pressure teams and have a knack of forcing turnovers. This is a tough defense to play at this time of the season. Expect Peyton Manning to be hit many times in their Divisional Round game.

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2. A New Philip Rivers

Pat Lovell-USA TODAY Sports

It’s always good to have a quarterback playing for you that has been in these situations before. Philip Rivers has not been to a Super Bowl, but he has played in many playoff games in his career. He has also won many games on the road in the playoffs. After a few seasons of very poor play, Rivers is back with a vengeance. He realizes that the playoffs are not always a guaranteed thing. Rivers is one of the most intense quarterbacks you will ever meet. He has a running game to help him win, and he has a young receiving corps that is centered by a veteran, future Hall of Fame tight end in Antonio Gates. He is definitely a guy that does not know how to quit, and that is scary at this time of the year for any team to face.

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1. They Have Nothing To Lose

Pat Lovell-USA TODAY Sports

In the movie Titanic, Leonardo DiCaprio says a famous line. No, not his “I’m king of the world,” but this quote: “When you got nothing, you got nothing to lose.” That is exactly where this San Diego Chargers team is right now; they have nothing to lose. Everyone expects the Broncos and the Patriots to be battling it out to see who will go to the Super Bowl. That may very well happen., but the Chargers are the team that can say, “If we win that’s awesome; if we lose no one expected us to make it this far!” Those other teams are expected to make it far, but the Chargers are a dangerous team that has absolutely nothing to lose.

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