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News » San Diego Chargers Inside Slant 2009-04-07

San Diego Chargers Inside Slant 2009-04-07

San Diego Chargers Inside Slant 2009-04-07
The Chargers have been knocking on the Super Bowl the past two seasons.

Two years ago they advanced to the AFC Championship Game before falling to Patriots.

Last year they fell one game short of the conference title tilt when losing to the Steelers in the playoffs.

Is this the year the Chargers finally crash through that door to reach their second Super Bowl in franchise history?

"I think we're very close," running back LaDainian Tomlinson said. "Obviously over the past two years we've been hampered a little bit by injuries. That's been the unlucky part of it. I've got to figure that it's our time. I've got to figure that this is not going to continue to happen to us where we get so close and get injured and really hurt ourselves in that way where we can't be at full strength."

Tomlinson knows about the health issues all too well.

It was a torn groin muscle that prevented him from playing at Heinz Field when the team stumbled against the Steelers.

The previous season, Tomlinson was done for the game after the first quarter when aggravating a knee injury against the Patriots. Others ailing that frigid New England day were quarterback Philip Rivers and tight end Antonio Gates.

"When we're at full strength, we're a tough team to deal with," Tomlinson said. "I think everyone has seen that in the past. I'm looking forward to being at full strength with this team."

The Chargers are hopeful it's not trend with Tomlinson being beat up and unable to go when he is needed most. He soon turns 30 years of age and its possible Tomlinson's bumps and bruises will take longer to heal.

Tomlinson said he is eager to show he can stay fit for 16 games, plus a postseason.

"Absolutely," he said. "I feel like I do have to prove I can stay healthy. I've always felt like I needed to prove something."

Tomlinson said his status reminds him of when he was drafted fifth overall and some wondered if he would last - he's entering his ninth year.

"When I first came into the league, I wanted to prove that I could play in this league and that I could be dominant," he said. "I know I can do that.

"Going on 30, I want to prove that I can stay healthy a full season and still be that dominant player. Honestly, I haven't had any serious injuries with surgeries. I don't see why I can't continue to be a dominant player."

Which would mean the Chargers would continue to be a dominate team.

Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: April 8, 2009

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Andrew Pinnock Name: Andrew Pinnock
Position: RB
Age: 28
Experience: 6 years
College: South Carolina
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