Do you feel it? That jittery anxiousness writhing around in the pit of your stomach that somehow perks up every first week of August like some sort of late-summer viral Groundhog's Day? Calm down, you're going to be just fine as these symptoms are not brought on by some sort of new debilitating and deadly disease but rather the ever closer, yet excruciatingly slow return of NFL football, although those worn down by the monotony of baseball might argue that the two might as well be the same.
But now that football is almost finally, mercifully upon us, there is no time better than now to begin the prognostications and predictions for the San Diego Chargers upcoming season.
Before that however, a quick recap on what was by far the most disappointing Chargers season of the Norv Turner era. The Chargers began by posting a 2-5 record due in large part to a special teams unit that was widely considered one of, if not the, worst of all time. The Chargers managed to win seven of their final nine games in their typical streaky fashion, but were unable to capture a fifth consecutive AFC West title and were relegated to an early January vacation.
During this most tumultuous offseason, the Chargers turned their attention to upgrading their No. 1 overall ranked, yet highly inflated defense. As former defensive coordinator Ron Rivera was hired as head coach of the Carolina Panthers, the Chargers replaced him with former linebackers coach and San Francisco 49ers defensive coordinator Greg Manusky in the hopes of maintaining continuity and re-energizing a solid yet unspectacular unit. The Chargers also brought in several key players such as LB Takeo Spikes and S Bob Sanders, and re-signed pivotal members in Eric Weddle and Malcom Floyd. At this point the roster appears to be set, aside from the mandatory training camp cuts.
So just what does the 2011 season have in store for the boys in Bolts?