Another blown fourth-quarter lead for frustrated C

Nov 22, 2000 10:00 AM
The San Diego Chargers must be wondering what it takes to win an NFL football game. The Bolts fell in another heartbreaker in the final minute Sunday, this time dropping a 38-37 tearjerker to the Denver Broncos. Despite an overpowering game by quarterback Ryan Leaf, the Chargers fell for the 11th straight time, including an NFL record-tieing sixth time they let a fourth-quarter lead slip away. This time, it was a 34-17 lead which disappeared, as Broncos reserve quarterback Gus Frerotte became the first NFL quarterback in nearly two decades to throw both four touchdowns and four interceptions in the same contest. Next up for San Diego is a home game with Kansas City at "Dave Letterman Stadium." If the Chargers’ luck is going to change, this could be the time. Thursday, Nov. 23 Lions 20, Patriots 13: New England has a tough time against average teams, so playing an above-average team, they’ll have no chance. Double-trouble occurs in the difficulty to beat a Detroit side which doesn’t lose at home on Thanksgiving Day. Take the Lions and lay the points. Vikings 29, Cowboys 12: How far will Dallas fall before regaining respectability? Much more before this season is over, as the Vikings should have a picnic here. However, should the weather be unfavorable, the pick could be iffy. Sunday, Nov. 26 Bucs 19, Bills 17: In its last outing, Buffalo made a strong comeback to upend Kansas City, but they’ll have a more difficult time with a Tampa Bay side that’s in a do-or-die situation. If the Bucs lose here, all chances of making the playoffs go down the drain. Bucs —5 gets the job done barely. Colts 24, Dolphins 13: Indianapolis is a different (better) team indoors, while Miami is a different (not better) team on turf. Ignore last week’s results in opposite situations. Colts —6 have enough defense to spell the difference. Rams 31. Saints 10: With QB Jeff Blake and RB Ricky Williams missing, New Orleans is in serious trouble. And this is the first of two meetings left with the Rams. See the Saints playoff dream go down the drain, as Rams —14 is our selection. Jets 27, Bears 13: The Jets, coming off five dynamite quarters over Miami, need to keep winning to make the playoffs from the NFL’s toughest division. Getting 10 wins may not be enough here. NYJ doesn’t cover the spread often at home, but things will be different here, so Jets —7 is our pick. Redskins 24, Eagles 10: The lead in the NFC East should change this week, as Washington should have enough to beat Philly, unless Jeff George is at quarterback. Going with the Skins —6½ here, unless George gets the call. Bengals 20, Steelers 17: Cincinnati learns a lot from the film of Jacksonville’s bg Sunday night win in Steel City, plus the Bengals chances of victory are brighter at home. Cincy +5 helps. Ravens 24, Browns 0: Baltimore defense looks to shutout every team they play, especially sides with poor offenses like Cleveland. Laying the 15 isn’t special, but it’s a winner here. Raiders 31, Falcons 10: Oakland can fall asleep here and still cover the 11-point spread against the injury-riddles Falcons. Jags 23, Titans 17: Turning around a season one headed for disaster, expect Jax to put up another monster effort. And getting 4 ½ at home is another inducment to wager high on this game. Seahawks 23, Broncos 16: Denver escaped the "honor" of losing to San Diego with last-minute heroics, but no heroics here against a rested Seattle side. Hawks +4, and with Denver missing QB Brian Griese, is a plus. Chargers 27, Chiefs 16: Save John Madden’s infamous turkey legs for the Bolts, which get off the schenid against KC. And getting 4 points is the gravy. Giants 24, Cards 20: Missing QB Jake Plummer is a mere inconvenience for the Cards, which will stay close at home before folding. Take the Cards +7. Monday, Nov. 27 Packers 37, Panthers 34: A Monday night shootout won’t surprise anyone, as the Over is the best bet here. All MNF games have been exciting, and here’s another one. The Pack +1½ and over 44½ in like money in the bank.