JAY DAVIS: Chargers destined to be next champs?
I picked up a gem of a statistic on Sunday morning. This is not something to bet the mortgage on, but it is interesting.
Here are the Philadelphia Eagles’ last five home openers. In 2009 the Eagles hosted the New Orleans Saints in their first home game. The Saints beat the Eagles 48-22 and went on to win the Super Bowl. The Packers were in Philly for the Eagles’ home opener in 2010. The Packers won a 27-20 game and went on to win the Super Bowl. Noticing a pattern? The New York Giants beat the Eagles 29-16 in their 2011 home opener, and the Giants went on to become the world champions. Last season it was the Ravens. Even though the Eagles beat Baltimore 24-23, the Ravens still won the Super Bowl.
So that leaves this season. Well, that team was the same San Diego Chargers who were 5-7 at one point and were one game from elimination the entire month of December. The Chargers beat Philly 33-30 in this season’s home opener, by the way.
This is nothing more than curious, but I won’t discount it until the Chargers lose. They handled the Bengals in Cincinnati this weekend. Most of the pundits said it was because the Bengals laid an egg, but maybe not. We’ll see what happens this weekend in Denver. The Chargers beat the Broncos in Denver just a couple of weeks ago. They will be extremely confident going into the game.
I watched all of or parts of about a dozen NFL and college bowl football games starting on New Year’s Eve and man was there a lot of high drama.
It all started with Texas A&M’s comeback against Duke in the Sun Bowl with Johnny Manziel having another of his Pecos Bill-ian second halves. The Big Ten had a couple big moments on New Year’s Day. Nebraska held on by the skin of its teeth to edge Georgia 24-19 in the Sun Bowl, followed by Michigan State proving its worth with a 24-20 win over Stanford in the Rose Bowl. The Fiesta Bowl was a shootout that evening with Central Florida outscoring Baylor 52-42.
The Jan. 2 Sugar Bowl was, of course, my favorite game of the week. How about my two-touchdown underdog Oklahoma Sooners upsetting the Crimson Tide 45-31? I can still hear the band playing.
With the streets and highways paved in ice, Friday was a good football night, too. Two games were on at once, so I didn’t concentrate on one. As I was switching back and forth, the teams in the Cotton Bowl and Orange Bowl were switching leads. Both games had late drama as Clemson beat Ohio State in the Orange Bowl and Mizzou beat Oklahoma State the Cotton Bowl.
The cold, cold weekend had four NFL games. The Indianapolis Colts’ comeback win over the Chiefs set the stage for a good Wildcard weekend. The aforementioned Chargers had the only laugher as New Orleans beat Philadelphia and San Francisco beat Green Bay on late (as in last play of the game late) field goals.
That left Monday night’s BCS Championship at the Rose Bowl. May I say wow! Not having an interest in which team was the winner, my hope for the game was fourth-quarter drama. There could not have been more. Florida State trailed 20-7 at the half and looked out of sync. The Seminoles found their rhythm in the second half and got back in the game. The fourth quarter was back and fourth with Auburn taking the lead with a little more than a minute left and then Florida State winning the championship with 13 seconds on the clock.
As 2013 became 2014, that may have been the best seven days of football this lifetime fan has ever seen.