The Evster: Everything You Always Wanted to Know About the San Diego Chargers, But Were Afraid to Google

The Evster: Everything You Always Wanted to Know About the San Diego Chargers, But Were Afraid to Google

Ohhhhhh, baby! This Sunday rekindles the bitter rivalry between our beloved Eagles and their longtime enemies to the west, the San Diego Chargers. There's no love lost between these two teams, like the Steelers and Browns or Duke vs North Carolina, Philadelphia and San Diego are separated by only a short 2,695 mile drive across the Pennsylvania Turnpike, then over to I-70 West, then a quick turn onto 55 South, then continuing onto 44 West through Oklahoma, then merging onto I-40 through Texas, New Mexico and a little bit of Arizona, then around 37 more turns leading you to zip across I-8 until you can hear the sweet sounds of waves crashing in the Pacific Ocean. If you leave now you could probably make it there by Sunday's kickoff, especially because the game is being played in Philly. Then again, traffic on the Schuylkill Expressway can be pretty jammed up at times, so you never really know.

Who can forget some of the all-time classic games between the Birds and the Bolts? How 'bout the 13-6 thriller in 1974 that saw Eagles linebacker Clint "The Spleen Crusher" Jenkins crush the spleens of 17 different Chargers running backs, only to have his own spleen crushed by teammate Bob Bogdanov during a post-spleen-crushing celebrashe.

[PHOTO GALLERY: Check out the new upgrades to the Linc this year]

This year's Chargers head into week 2 with their spleens intact, but carry with them an 0-1 record after dropping their season opener 31-28 to the Houston Texans. San Diego led by 21 points early in the 3rd Quarter last week, but they're unfortunately still quarterbacked by Captain Noodle Arm, Philip Rivers, who threw a devastating Pick Six during the 4th Quarter. This week, as the Bolts look to get back to .500, I did some internet sleuthing to learn a little more about their key players.

So let's break down the Chargers of San Diego position by position.

Quarterback

Ole Linguini Limbs Rivers comes into this weekend riding the NFL's second longest consecutive games started streak behind only Eli Manning (113 to 128). Nothing would make Philly fans prouder than to see that streak end after Mychal Kendricks crushes Rivers's spleen into 49 different pieces.

From the looks of Rivers, he seems to be a total douchenstein extraordinairre, but he was actually named a finalist for the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Award back in 2011. Seems as if he and his wife Tiffany help find safe homes for abandoned and orphaned children. That's nice, I guess, if you're into that sort of thing. Side note: Rivers met his wife in middle school so there's a very good chance that she's the only woman he's ever slept with. Despite his charity work, faith-based values and monogamous lifestyle, I'd still love to see his rib cage explode on live television.

Seeing as Philip may not be as big of a douche as he seems, let's take a look at the current list of the top 5 douche-jobs in the NFL.

1. Jay Cutler - constantly yells at his O-Line, somehow married a Playboy Bunny, absolutely unacceptable hairstyle for most of his NFL career.

2. Ben Roehtthhislerberger - just the 2 rapes for Big Ben.

3. Floyd Mayweather - technically not a football player, but there's no denying that a good portion of the American public would love to watch him die in the ring this Saturday night.

4. Mario Lopez - San Diego native is way too happy about life.

Only $11.96 on Amazon.

5 (tie). Tony Romo (obvs) and DeAngelo Hall - scooped up a Michael Vick backwards pass last week after pretty much everyone had stopped playing, then sauntered 80 yards to the end zone like Mikhail Baryshnikov where he proceeded to dance like Deion Sanders (HE DIDN'T EVEN DO HIS OWN DANCE, HE JUST STRAIGHT UP IMITATED DEION) despite making a play that any living, breathing human being (including Nate Allen) could've made.

Running Backs

Ryan Mathews (JUST THE ONE "T" IN MATHEWS, THANK YOU VERY MUCH), Ronnie Brown (YEP, THAT RONNIE BROWN) and Danny Woodhead (NOTHING TO REALLY SAY HERE).

If there's one person who is most likely to have their spleen shattered on Sunday, it's Ryan Mathews. That guy is fragile, having played only 12, 14 and 12 games a season during his 3-year career. Luckily, the Chargers also have Ronnie Brown and picked up Itty Bitty Danny Woodhead in the offseason. Fun facts about Woodhead (from his bio at Chargers.com): Danny was homeschooled up until 9th grade (red flag) and all of the men in the Woodhead family are nicknamed "Woody" except for his father, Mark, who goes by "Big Woody". Can't make this stuff up, folks. Cannot make this stuff up. Big. Woody. Also, are you aware of what Little Woody looks like?!?!

And he's got some hair on his chinny chin chin!

Receivers / Tight Ends

The Chargers' receivers are all terrible (Eddie Royal is currently banned in 74% of ESPN's standard fantasy leagues), but they still have Antonio Gates, the 8-time Pro Bowler who seems to suck more and more butt every year. Even if Gates turned back the clock and showed up as his former self on Sunday, it wouldn't matter because the Eagles have the most dominant linebacker in the history of football, Mychal Kendricks, a guy who most Philadelphians didn't even know existed until roughly five days ago.

Offensive Line

Any time a person pretends to know anything about an offensive line, they are LYING. The only person with any knowledge about this position is Ray Didinger. All I know is that during Week 1, Ryan Mathews averaged a paltry 2.5 yards per carry, so the Chargers O-line probably stinks. Also, one of their starters is former Eagle, King Dunlap, which totally explains the whole 2.5 yards per carry thingie.

Something you probably didn't know about King Dunlap: His sister Victoria plays for the WNBA's Seattle Storm and averages a Ryan Mathews-esque 2.6 points per game.

Semi-interesting Information About the Chargers Logo:

During their initial years in the AFL, the Chargers had a lightning bolt AND A HORSE in their logo. It wasn't until the NFL-AFL merger that they decided to ditch the horse. Frankly, that seems kinda stupid considering only 9% of people die from lightning strikes whereas 98% of people who get kicked in the face by a horse get their entire heads blown off.

Nice horsey.

Defensive Line

After spending his first 11 seasons with the Colts, future Hall of Famer Dwight Freeney signed a free agent deal this summer with San Diego. Technically, Freeney is listed as an outside linebacker, but he pretty much rushes the quarterback any time he's on the field. Honestly, I have no idea if he's still any good and am really excited to move on and talk about the Chargers linebackers.

Linebackers

So, so, so, so, so, so sad that we won't get to see Manti Te'o in uniform this week. The ChristianMingler.com is nursing a foot injury and has no timetable for his return. BUT DON'T FRET MY GOOD 700 LEVEL FRIENDS, because in his place the Chargers are starting a guy named Bront. Yep, that's his name. Bront. Bront Bird.

Bront led the Chargers in tackles last week and is seriously, honest to God named Bront. Turns out, Bront went to Permian High School in Odessa, Texas, which just so happens to be the same school that Buzz Bissinger wrote about in Friday Night Lights. Not quite sure why that's relevant here, but it does sort of make the whole Bront thing a little more understandable. Also, guess what Bront's nickname is. Nope, not "Brontosaurus Balls" (that's what I thought, too), it's "Big Bird".

Secondary

Pro Bowl free safety, Eric Weddle, is probably the Chargers best player -- and is so popular in San Diego that he recently wrote a book entitled "No Excuses, No Regrets: The Eric Weddle Story". Obviously I didn't read the whole thing, but I did skim one excerpt from the first chapter and came across this gem:

The author describes the birth of little Eric.

Within a few years, Debbie and Steve (Eric's parents) discussed the idea of starting a family. Shortly thereafter Debbie learned she was pregnant, and they had a baby girl. Kathleen arrived without incident ... and even though she was a girl, Steve considered naming her Eric. While he loved his daughter, he had also always wanted a son, and he wanted to name him Eric, a name he picked out for his future son when he was a teenager. "It was a strong name," Steve said. "I loved it."

Okay.

Okay okay okay okay okay hold on.

Eric?

That's a strong name? I don't know about you, but I grew up with around 13 different Erics and pretty much every one of them went on to sell life insurance. I'm not saying there's not strong Erics -- Erik the Red was a bonafide beast -- but the name Eric pales in comparison to something like Bront. Expect Desean Jackson to rack up over 200 receiving yards against the Weddlenator.

How 'bout Shefty getting a quote on the front cover!

Special Teams

Normally this is a spot devoted to weenies, but both the Chargers' kicker and punter appear to have a little street cred. Kicker, Nick Novak, was close friends with Kellen Winslow Jr. growing up and the two buddies actually share the same godmother (NOT KIDDING).

San Diego's punter, Mike Scifres (actual last name), was a high school teammate of notorious spleen crusher, Ed Reed. Sadly, back in high school, Reed was considered the far superior punter so Scifres was relegated to kickoffs, field goals and extra points. Even sadder, Scifres and his wife Stacie named their three children Berkeley, Bristyn and Brodyn, proving that they are by far the worst parents in the history of Western civilization.

Mascot

Say hello to Boltman.

It's a bolt and it's also a man.

Boltman obviously sucks, but it must be stated that the San Diego Chicken is without a doubt the second best mascot of all time (behind you know who). My favorite San Diego Chicken memory was from an episode of The Baseball Bunch back in the day in which Andre Dawson aka "The Hawk" was scheduled to drop by. The Chicken spent the entire half hour bugging out because he thought The Hawk might eat him.

Broadcasters

The dynamic duo of Greg Gumbel and Dan Dierdorf will be calling the game for CBS. Kickoff is scheduled for 10am PST. Dierdorf is working on his own consecutive games streak as he will attempt to broadcast his 147th straight game with his testicles firmly implanted inside his own throat.

Coaching

Doesn't matter. Chip Kelly is a GOLDEN GOD.

Prediction

Eagles 358 Chargers 4

Follow the Evster @TVMWW

Best of MLB: Dodgers deny Cubs' Jake Arrieta 21st straight win

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Best of MLB: Dodgers deny Cubs' Jake Arrieta 21st straight win

CHICAGO -- Scott Kazmir and two relievers combined on a one-hitter, matching zeros with Cubs ace Jake Arrieta before the Los Angeles Dodgers got to Chicago's bullpen for a 5-0 victory Tuesday night.

Arrieta went seven scoreless innings, but was denied his 21st consecutive victory. The Cubs had won in Arrieta's last 23 starts.

Cubs left-hander Clayton Richard (0-1) gave up three straight singles to lefties in the eighth, the last Adrian Gonzalez's liner to left that scored Chase Utley and ended the Dodgers' 16-inning scoreless streak.

Corey Seager hit a three-run homer off Trevor Cahill in the ninth.

Joe Blanton (3-2) struck out three in two perfect innings as the Dodgers snapped the Cubs' six-game winning streak.

Kazmir allowed a single and a walk with seven strikeouts in six innings. Adam Liberatore struck out one in a perfect ninth (see full recap).

Betts hits trio of homers in Red Sox win
BALTIMORE -- Mookie Betts hit a career-high three homers and drove in five runs, and the Boston Red Sox cruised past the Baltimore Orioles 6-2 on Tuesday night to open a three-game lead in the AL East.

Betts led off the game with a shot to center and added a three-run drive to left in the second inning. After lining out to second base in the fourth, Betts hit a bases-empty homer to right in the seventh.

Batting in the ninth inning with a chance to tie the major league record of four homers in a game, Betts grounded out to second against rookie Ashur Tolliver.

Still, he's the first Boston player to hit three homers in a game since Will Middlebrooks against Toronto on April 7, 2013. Betts' 12 home runs rank second on the team behind David Ortiz, who has 14.

Red Sox shortstop Xander Bogaerts stretched his career-best hitting streak to 24 games with a single in the seventh inning (see full recap).

Rockies tie franchise record with 7 HRs
DENVER -- Nolan Arenado and Charlie Blackmon each hit two of Colorado's team record-tying seven homers, powering the Rockies to a 17-4 win over the Cincinnati Reds on Tuesday night.

Blackmon became the first player in Rockies history to hit leadoff homers in back-to-back games and added his first career grand slam in the seventh. Carlos Gonzalez homered for a fourth straight game, while DJ LeMahieu and Gerardo Parra also went deep.

It was the first time Colorado hit seven homers at Coors Field. The team also had seven on April 5, 1997, in Montreal.

Rockies right-hander Jon Gray (3-2) allowed three runs in six solid innings.

Jon Moscot (0-3) was hit hard in his return from the disabled list. He surrendered seven runs and four homers in two innings. Moscot also was grazed in the right ear in the third while bunting. Moscot stayed down for a moment before taking his base (see full recap).

Difference in talent, power glaring as Phillies continue to lose to top teams

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Difference in talent, power glaring as Phillies continue to lose to top teams

BOX SCORE

The gap in talent level that exists between the Phillies and some of the top teams in the majors has really been evident over the last eight games.
 
The Phillies have lost seven of those eight games to the Tigers, Cubs and Nationals. Tuesday night brought the latest defeat, a 5-1 loss to the National League East-leading Nats at Citizens Bank Park (see Instant Replay). The Nats have won the first two games of the series and go for the sweep on Wednesday night.
 
While losing seven of their last eight, the Phillies have seen their feel-good story turn to dust. Their record has gone from 25-19 to 26-26 and their deficit in the NL East from two games to 5½.
 
“We had a good month and a half,” manager Pete Mackanin said. “When things are going good, they snowball. When things are going bad, they snowball. We’ve got to keep that snowball from rolling. We’ve got to get out of it.”
 
There are a number of reasons the Phillies have hit hard times. Poor offense is a big one. They have been held to two or fewer runs five times in their last seven losses and 20 times for the season. They are now averaging 3.15 runs per game, the lowest mark in the majors. Offense like that is the reason why Aaron Nola can pitch six innings of two-run ball and lose on two mistake pitches as he did Tuesday night. These pitchers have no margin for error.
 
One of the offensive’s big shortcomings is the lack of power. The Phils have been out-homered 15-7 in the last eight games. Washington hit four longballs on Tuesday night; the Phillies hit none. In fact, the Phillies had just four hits – period.
 
“We’re just getting out-homered every night,” Mackanin said. “We’re not hitting home runs. I feel like it’s a broken record. We’re not hitting.”
 
For the season, the Phillies have 39 homers. Only Atlanta has hit fewer.
 
And it doesn’t appear as if things are going to get all that much better any time soon. Management would consider trading for a bat close to the July trading deadline – if the team is in the race. With reality striking hard lately, it’s tough to see this team being in the race for anything but a top-10 pick in next year’s draft. In the short term, the Phils could soon have Cody Asche back on the roster.
 
“Our pitching overall has been very good,” Mackanin said. “We’ve just got to hit.”
 
The Nationals won this game with power and good starting pitching.
 
Right-hander Joe Ross held the Phils to a run over seven innings – an RBI triple by Cesar Hernandez.
 
Meanwhile, Jayson Werth capitalized on a poorly located fastball by Nola and homered two batters into the game. Daniel Murphy got Nola in the sixth to break a 1-1 tie.
 
Nola would like to have had both pitches back.
 
“The pitch to Werth was right down the chute,” he said. “With Murphy, I wanted to get it in a little further and I didn’t.”
 
Other than that, Nola was pretty good. He pitched out of trouble in the second inning and was supported by a double play started nicely at second by Hernandez and a nice catch by Odubel Herrera in center field.
 
“We’re doing some things right but not enough of them,” Mackanin said.
 
“That’s baseball,” Nola said of the lack of run support. “Sometimes we pitch bad and get a lot of run support. The guys are battling. I feel like we’re going to bounce back the next couple of games.”
 
The Nationals blew the game open with three runs in the ninth against reliever Colton Murray. Danny Espinosa smacked a two-run homer and Stephen Drew followed with an inside-the-park homer.
 
The two home runs deprived Nats closer Jonathan Papelbon a chance at a save as he recorded the final three outs against his old team.

Instant Replay: Nationals 5, Phillies 1

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Instant Replay: Nationals 5, Phillies 1

BOX SCORE

The Phillies' late-May slide continued in a 5-1 loss to the Washington Nationals at Citizens Bank Park on Tuesday night.
 
Aaron Nola delivered a solid start, but got poor run support. The Phillies entered the game averaging 3.2 runs per game, lowest in the majors.
 
The Nationals scored all their runs on home runs.
 
The Phillies have lost nine of their last 11 games. They are 1-7 in their last eight and have gone from 25-19 and two games back in the NL East to 26-26 and 5½ games back.
  
Starting pitching report
Nola went six innings and allowed two runs, both on solo homers. He walked one and struck out six. He is 4-4 with a 2.88 ERA.
 
Washington right-hander Joe Ross (5-4) pitched a strong game. He gave up just three hits and a run over seven innings. He walked two and struck out five. Ross has given up just two runs over 14 innings in his last two starts.
 
Bullpen report
Jonathan Papelbon closed it out for the Nats in a non-save situation.
 
At the plate
The Phillies had just four hits. They have been held to two or fewer runs 20 times in their 52 games.

Cesar Hernandez tripled home the Phillies' only run.

Jayson Werth and Daniel Murphy accounted for the Nationals’ first two runs pair of solo homers against Nola. Danny Espinosa smacked a two-run homer off Colton Murray in the ninth and Stephen Drew followed with an inside-the-park homer.
 
Murphy also singled in the game. He had 47 hits in the month of May, tying a Washington/Montreal franchise record that had previously been shared by Al Oliver and Marquis Grissom.

Lineup stuff
Mackanin was trying to send Hernandez a message by batting him eighth (see story).
 
Bryce Harper did not play for Washington. He was hit on the right leg by a pitch in Monday night’s game.
 
Slumping Ryan Howard started at first base and went hitless in three at-bats to fall to .154. He hit .101 (7 for 69) in the month of May.
 
Howard will not start Wednesday night against Max Scherzer. He is 1 for 18 with 11 strikeouts against Scherzer. Tommy Joseph will start that game.
 
Minor matters
Cody Asche’s minor-league rehab stint expires Wednesday. He could rejoin the team at any time.
 
Up next
 The series concludes on Wednesday night. Lefty Adam Morgan (1-3, 6.67) pitches against Washington right-hander Scherzer (5-4, 4.05).