San Diego Charger Issues – LaDainian Tomlinson Speaks the Truth

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Photo from SD Dirk via Flickr

Photo from SD Dirk via Flickr

Well, the time had to come sometime. What time is that you ask? The time when LaDainian Tomlinson, or “LT” as most San Diego Charger fans call him, is no longer the king of the city (even if he lives in Poway actually).

With the extreme arrogance that starts at the very top of the San Diego Chargers franchise, it certainly appears as though “LT” is as good as gone. That in itself is not tremendously surprising news, given the cut-throat business that is the NFL. But some of the things he is saying on his way out the door are confirming many of the same internal realities about the San Diego team. He  is pointing out what many, including this sportswriter, have been pointing out for some time. Realities, that until they are addressed, will keep this team from being a true championship football team regardless of how much talent General Manager A.J Smith brags that he has brought to San Diego. 

Perhaps some of LT’s recent comments on the XX Sports Radio talk show, the Scott and BR Show could have been positioned as sour grapes, without a doubt. But there is a lot of truth to many of the comments he made. “…It’s not about the values no more. It’s not about football, the things you’re taught- faith, family, football. To them, it’s not about that no more. It’s the name… It’s ‘me’.” He goes on to say that he does not want to deal with that anymore and will not renegotiate his contract; almost assuring he will be part of some sort of buyout.

Interestingly, two of the Charger players who did comment were probably among the group to which he referred. That being Shawn Merriman, ironically who may be a victim of the A.J. Smith fiefdom, responded to LT’s comments by remarking, “I really don’t think so.”

Yes, this is the same Merriman who made headlines with his Labor Day weekend incident with noted bi-sexual Tila Tequila during a party at his home, getting arrested for a brief time. The latest development is that he may be in the middle of a paternity suit with friend Tiffany Horne.

Yet another response was heard by wide-out Vincent Jackson, who said, “I don’t see it like that.” Yes, this is the same Vincent Jackson who is reputed to be a mainstay at certain San Diego drinking establishments, having been cited for his second (alleged) DUI, but whose attorney was able to get the trial delayed until March of this year so he could finish out the season. The same Vincent Jackson who was briefly detained (and handcuffed) for driving with a suspended license the day of the playoff debacle against the Jets. It seems pretty certain that Jackson is likely on his way to a suspension of probably 1-2 games.

It goes on and on. Like the unconfirmed report that several players were at a strip club the Friday before the Jets game.

In that respect, I agree with “LT.” As I have often said, “talent wins football games, but character wins championships.” Hey, that’s pretty good – and I didn’t even steal it from anyone.


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