Eli Manning received a less than cordial reception in San Diego as the Giants faced off against the Chargers in San Diego this weekend. Fans tailgating before the game posted signs calling out “Eli’s Vagiants” and “ shEli Manning,” which poked fun at the younger Manning brother. My personal favorite was a cardboard cutout of Eli’s face with makeup on it that was held over the wall into the end zone (did anyone see that on TV?!). The crowd was excited and LOUD at Qualcomm Stadium. The atmosphere was exciting, and I was lucky enough to be there to experience it.
Manning’s less-than-welcome reception is due to the 2004 draft, when Eli Manning was chosen by the Chargers as the number one overall draft pick, and his father Archie announced that Eli would not be playing for the Chargers franchise, forcing the Chargers to trade Eli to the NY Giants—in exchange for Philip Rivers and two draft picks, including the Giants number one in 2005.
This Sunday, Rivers showed San Diego that they didn’t need Eli as the Chargers blew out the two time Super Bowl winning Giants. In addition to Philip Rivers,who finished the game with 249 yards and three touchdowns, two Charger players really stood out at this game. Keenan Allen continued to make a strong case for himself for Rookie of the Year as he broke a franchise record for the most receptions by a rookie in a single season—61– beating out Chargers’ legend LaDainian Tomlinson. He also made the first two touchdowns of the game for the Chargers, which got the game off to an exciting start. The Chargers would go on to beat the Giants 37-14.
The Chargers run game continued to be strong this week. Ryan Mathews ran for 103 yards and a touchdown, while Danny Woodhead had a touchdown reception and one of the best plays of the week, according to NFL.com, as he bobbled River’s pass back and forth–only to catch it in the most epic of manners: with one hand.
Melvin Ingram’s return from his May injury seemed to ignite the defense. Coupled with the return of Jarret Johnson, the defense really stepped up in this game – forcing a season-high three turnovers for the Chargers.
Charger fans are still soaking in the defeat of the forever disliked Eli Manning, but the Chargers themselves are preparing for the older (let’s be honest, more talented) Manning brother, Peyton. Facing off against the Broncos on a short week—in Denver—is going to be quite the challenge. Let’s hope the Chargers can take a stand at Mile High Stadium, and let’s also hope that it doesn’t get too cold!
Me and friends at the game!