Don’t get it twisted. If your initial inference from the headline above is that I’m here to “mansplain” how to cheer for an NFL team to a female fan, this isn’t that. It’s more precisely looking out for one’s mental health than anything else.
I get that the Dallas Cowboys come up similarly small on massive stages (see: 42-10 loss last Sunday night). But if you truly are a diehard Chargers fan, or even if you’re a passionate newcomer, are you not fully aware what this team does on a regular basis?
…We’re a mere five whole games removed from the Bolts squandering a 27-0 lead to the Jaguars in the playoffs. The year before, they had a chance to tie and make the postseason in the regular-season finale and blew that, too.
How did Chargers stans think Monday’s matchup with the Cowboys was going to end?
A lot of people are theorizing that this impassioned lady is a plant. Prior to Monday night’s kickoff, the Chargers and Cowboys got into a scuffle, which I opined wasn’t the worst way to draw interest to pro football in Los Angeles. Something about the whole phenomenon feels so impersonal.
It’s got to be unnerving for Justin Herbert and the offense when the crowd is so loud, cheering against them, on third downs because opposing fans almost (do?) outnumber the home team. Herbert is the only legitimate ray of hope the Bolts can typically bank on. If you have a surefire franchise quarterback, you have a chance, right?
Eh. When your running backs give you only 31 yards on 16 carries like they did on this particular occasion, life can be hard. Not to mention, Brandon Staley’s defense let up four consecutive fourth-quarter third downs, which led to 10 Dallas points.
For all the internal factors working against him, though, Herbert could’ve really helped himself here by connecting with a wide-open Keenan Allen:
If memory serves, Dak Prescott missed a similarly WAO (wide-azz-open) target, and was also victimized by a Michael Gallup drop in the end zone at some point. It was the comedy of errors and undisciplined play you’d assume from a ‘Boys-Bolts tilt with Staley and Mike McCarthy as head coaches. The teams combined for TWENTY penalties for 164 yards.
Bottom line is…well, this is the bottom line — as it often is for the Chargers faithful:
Somebody tell this woman it’s OK to walk away from a toxic relationship. Easier said than done, I get it. Think of it this way: it’s not like loyalty wins the day in a town like LA anyway! I know that’s a gross generalization. I’m clearly joking. Assuming the Chargers will lose in a big spot is a gross generalization too, yet it keeps happening! And that I’m serious about.
My movement teacher in drama school once said, “Expectation is the root of all heartbreak.” I’m sure that was pulled and paraphrased from somewhere else. Clearly it stuck with me. Not that I go through life expecting everything to go to hell. It’s just…sometimes you can see the red flags coming from a mile away.
So while I appreciate the passion, effort and optimism that you’d never see from 95% of Chargers fans who know better, this woman gave it her all on Monday Night Football. I salute her, and I hope she’s rewarded with Staley getting canned at the end of the season. That dude does not deserve to be an NFL head coach. He’s a defensive guru whose defense gets routinely gashed, and he’s honestly lucky not to be 0-5 this season.