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2005 San Diego Chargers NFL Handicapping Review


By Tom Wilkinson


Coming off of a 4-12 season in 2003 and having drafted a new quarterback for the future in the 2004 draft, what transpired for the San Diego Chargers last season was completely unexpected, even from many experts in the sports handicapping fraternity. Most online sports betting weblogs that had any posts regarding the Chargers before the start of the 2004 season were most uncomplimentary. This did not seem to be a team that would make the “A” list of any sports betting player’s football picks. How soon that would change.

The Chargers were certainly an inviting value in week one as 5-point dogs at Houston, and won the game straight up 27-20. In their home opener the following week, however, they seemed to return to form with a 28-34 loss to the Jets. That was followed by a flat 13-23 loss at Denver to give San Diego a 1-2 start to the season, with just one cover against the sports betting odds. Certainly no clues of what was to follow appeared at this time for even the most detail oriented amongst the sports handicapping community. San Diego, incredibly enough, would rip off a run of 11-2 straight up and 13-0 against the sports betting odds as they rode on the shoulders of the quarterback that they tried to get rid of before the season, Drew Brees, who became the quarterback that nobody believed he could be.

The game that convinced many sports betting players that the Chargers might be a team to be trusted with their football picks was, ironically enough, in a game that they lost. After a two game home winning streak San Diego had to play at improving Atlanta. This is normally the type of game that the Chargers of the past would fold in, but San Diego lost a heartbreaker 20-21, easily covering the 4.5-point spread set by the sports betting odds makers. When they won the following week as 3-point dogs at defending NFC champion Carolina, many sports betting players became sold and re-evaluated the Chargers as a potential team to include near the top of their list of football picks.

The Chargers finished the regular season 12-4 straight up, and 13-1-2 against the sports betting odds before hosting the Jets in the playoffs. San Diego coach Marty Schottenheimer has a reputation for getting a lot out of his teams in the regular season only to blow the playoffs and the Chargers kept Schottenheimer in form, as a they lost 17-20 as 6.5-point chalks due to a missed field goal.









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