2010 NFL Predictions: San Diego Chargers Among Favorites in the AFC

NFL Picks, NFL Predictions, 2010 NFL Schedule2010 NFL Predictions - San Diego Chargers Among Favorites in the AFC: The San Diego Chargers are again listed among the 2010 NFL predictions favorites to represent the AFC in the Super Bowl. Yet, players, coaches, front office personnel, and fans have to wonder what those 11-2 preseason NFL odds really mean. Seemingly, for the past five NFL predictions seasons, the Chargers have been on the short list of preseason elite only to fall short in the NFL playoffs.

The San Diego Chargers owned the AFC West and finished the 2009 regular NFL predictions season with a 13-3 record, but, once again, suffered a disappointing loss in the first round of the playoffs, this time, at home, against the New York Jets, 17-14.

That NFL predictions loss sparked an off-season of change. Gone are superstar running back LaDainian Tomlinson, and talented cornerback Antonio Cromartie. This is quarterback Philip Rivers’ team now and players have raved about his leadership skills during OTAs and training camp. The running game will be led by first round draft pick Ryan Mathews with Darren Sproles reprising his role as change-of-pace runner. The passing attach will be as lethal as ever with tight end Antonio Gates and wide outs Vincent Jackson and Malcolm Floyd all returning.

The defense is led by impact players such as Shawne Merriman, Shaun Phillips, Luis Castillo, and Quentin Jammer. The 3-4 defense puts lots of pressure on the opposing quarterback, resulting in 35 sacks last year, and the secondary doesn’t give-up a ton of big plays yet doesn’t make that many either.

Intangibles mean everything with this team. They have not yet learned to get over the hump with this group of players and Norv Turner has yet to get his team to the “Promised Land.” The Chargers will be under enormous pressure to play in the Super Bowl this year and how the players and coaches respond to that pressure might tell the real story in 2010.

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