Tag Archives: St Louis Rams

Chargers Add Depth In Free Agency

San Diego Football Chargers Tickets

San Diego

It’s been a quiet free agency period thus far for the San Diego Chargers when it comes to signing big names. The Chargers have resisted the urge to spend big on free agents, instead adding depth in running back Donald Brown, tight end David Johnson, linebacker Kavell Conner and quarterback Kellen Clemens. The four signings come on top of the Chargers re-signing Donald Butler, Darrell Stuckey and Chad Rhinehart.

Chargers general manager Tom Telesco struck a late night deal on Tuesday to bring in Brown from the Indianapolis Colts. The Chargers GM has familiarity with Brown from his time with the Colts, who drafted Brown with the 27th overall pick in the 2009 draft out of the University of Connecticut. Brown is coming off of the best season of his career in 2013 when he rushed for 537 yards on a 5.3 yard per carry average while catching 27 passes for 214 yards. The former Colt will give the Chargers solid depth in the backfield and a nice alternative to Ryan Mathews, who has battled injuries during his Chargers career. Brown is a sure-handed player with just two career NFL fumbles. Johnson, who played the last four seasons with the Pittsburgh Steelers is a capable backup who has played fullback as well as tight end. He’s known as a solid blocker who will give the Chargers versatility in the run game as well as an additional option in the passing game. Like in his acquisition of Donald Brown GM Telesco went with familiarity in signing Kavell Conner away from the Colts. Conner is a bit of a reclamation project after not starting a single game with the Indianapolis Colts during the 2013 season. With Donald Butler and Manti Te’o manning the inside linebacker positions the signing of Conner is more of a depth move. Conner is known for his ability to stop the run. Looking to add depth at the quarterback spots the Chargers opted not to re-sign Charlie Whitehurst and signed Kellen Clemens, recently of the St. Louis Rams. Clemens, a former starter with the New York Jets ended up starting a majority of the season in 2013 for the Rams. The former Oregon Duck should be a solid backup for veteran Philip Rivers. Clemens has started 21 games in his NFL career, with an 8-13 record.

SD Chargers Vs Raiders Tickets

Chargers Raiders

With only $5 million in available salary cap the Chargers were never going to be major players, like the Denver Broncos, in free agency this offseason. Instead Telesco has wisely added some depth players while holding on to some key contributors who were free agent eligible. The Chargers re-signed Donald Butler and special teams ace Darrell Stuckey. They also locked up Chad Rhinehart to a two-year contract, providing stability on the offensive line. Telesco also was able to get wide receiver Eddie Royal and linebacker Jarret Johnson to re-structure their contracts, giving the team additional flexibility. The key now is success in the draft, like in 2013 where three key starters were found in the first three picks.

The Chargers moves may not match the Super Bowl or bust attitude in Denver, but GM Telesco is wisely maintaining his depth and core while emphasizing continued growth through the upcoming draft. They may not compete with the Broncos for the top of the division but the Chargers should be solid wild card contributors once again.

Barry’s Tickets stocks Chargers Tickets for all home games at Qualcomm Stadium with no service fees or hidden charges.Chris Michaels

NFL Football in Los Angeles – Deja Vu all over again or something better?

From 1946 to 1980, the Los Angeles Rams roamed LA’s Colleseum with players like Rosey Grier, Merlin Olsen, and Deacon Jones stalking opposing quarterbacks. The Ram’s Eric Dickerson rushed for a then NFL record 2,105 yards in the 1984 season. The Rams appeared in the 1980 Super Bowl XIV, losing to the Pittsburgh Steelers. The Rams remained close by in Anaheim from 1980-1994. In 1982 the Raiders joined the Rams in LA. The Raiders won the 1984 Super Bowl XVIII as the Los Angeles Raiders.

But by 1995 both teams were out of Los Angeles. The Rams relocated to St. Louis, and the Raiders moved back to Oakland. Now football is on the cusp of being back in L.A. The questions is, will it work this time?

Recently significant progress in building a privately financed football stadium in L.A. has been made. The city counsel approved a plan to build Farmer’s Field, a $1.5 billion dollar stadium. The new project will connect to and expand the Los Angeles Convention Center. Los Angeles mayor Antonio Villaraigosa said in a statement, “We are a giant step closer to bringing NFL football back to Los Angeles.”

The NFL Network reported that NFL league offices sent letters to all 32 franchises advising teams of the potential time-line for moving a team into Los Angeles. The NFL advised teams to apply for relocation by February 15th, 2013. It’s been rumored that the San Diego Chargers, the Jacksonville Jaguars, and the St. Louis Rams, among others are in the mix relocate to Los Angeles.

The St. Louis Rams are unhappy with their stadium and would consider a move back to Los Angeles. Presumably, the Rams already have a fan base in Los Angeles leftover from the Ram’s long stint in the city. However, bitterness from the Ram’s relocation to St. Louis remains among some fans.

Perhaps more importantly, Los Angeles is a notoriously fickle city when it comes to supporting its sports franchises. There are underlying reasons that both the Rams and the Raiders left Los Angeles that go beyond the stadium facility issues. Gaining and keeping fan interest has proven difficult in the past. Hollywood is a unique and formidable competitor that no other sports city must face. The lure of Hollywood attracts a large population from all over the country that is either uninterested in sports or maintains loyalties to other sports teams outside L.A. Additionally, Los Angeles is far from a blue collar town which typically supports sports franchises as in Detroit, Chicago, Cleveland, and Pittsburgh.

The L.A. Lakers have a rabid following and are considered by many to be the only game in town. The L.A. Dodgers have long standing tradition and have made gains in previous years. U.S.C. is very popular among southern California sports fans. Competition and general apathy towards sports in L.A. raises attendance concerns for the NFL and potential owners. T.V. blackouts were a problem in the past.

Why is the NFL desirous of moving not only one, but potentially two franchises back to Los Angeles? The question is likely answered by the $3.1 billion dollar average annual television rights the league receives annually. That’s more than enough to withstand some poor attendance issues. The NFL is king of the hill when it comes to television. Unlike other sports leagues that are more dependent on attendance for revenues, the NFL makes the majority of its revenue from television. Having a presence in the second largest television market not only makes sense, but increase the value of the NFL’s TV package for the next round of negotiations with broadcast networks.

Despite the troubled past history of Los Angeles football, look for at least one NFL franchise to reappear in L.A. as soon as the 2012 season.

Mike Knapp
Knappernation.com

Alex Smith has to play better then last year!

Alex Smith San Francisco 49ers

Alex Smith San Francisco 49ers

The San Francisco 49ers are coming off one of the best turn around seasons under a new head coach that any team could have done. Last year new head coach Jim Harbaugh lead the 49ers to the NFC Championship game against the New York Giants. The Giants wound up winning that game due to bad special teams play the 49ers.

Alex Smith had the best season of his career throwing for 3144 yards with 17 touchdowns while only turning the ball over 5 times on interceptions. Smith had his best performance of the season in week 13 against the St. Louis Rams where he completed 73.9 percent of his passes for 274 yards and 2 touchdowns. Smith will have to put up bigger numbers in 2012 while continuing to not turn the ball over.

The 49ers went out to help the passing game out by picking up free agents Randy Moss and Mario Manningham. These 2 receivers should compliment Michael Crabtree and tight-end Vernon Davis to give Smith more weapons through the air. While the team also drafted A.J. Jenkins and LaMichael James to give them more weapons on offense.

As far as defense the 49ers were one of best overall in the entire league in most categories including second in fewest points with 14.3 points per game and also third in interceptions with 23. One of the best defensive performances came in week 15 against the Pittsburgh Steelers where the defense picked off 3 passes and recovered a fumble to help lead the team to a 20-3 win. The team will look for the veteran Patrick Willis to anchor the defense in 2012.

The 49ers should win the NFC West easily over the Seattle Seahawks, Arizona Cardinals and the St. Louis Rams. All three of those teams have a lot of concerns on both sides of the ball.