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Wednesday, May 11, 2011
Flash Points: Chargers' defining moment

By Bill Williamson

What key event significantly changed the fortunes of the Chargers -– for better or worse? Give us your take and we’ll give you our definitive moment May 24.

The Chargers got a great steal when they nabbed Oregon QB Dan Fouts in the third round of the 1973 draft. Fouts and coach Don Coryell made San Diego’s "Air Coryell" offense famous. Fouts was a premier gunslinger, and while the Chargers never made it to the Super Bowl under his guidance but they were one of the most dangerous teams in the NFL during his heyday.

The Chargers’ lone Super Bowl performance, a lopsided loss to San Francisco’s in Super Bowl XXIX, is a bad memory. But it was a part of team history.

The Chargers set themselves up for a productive decade with the selection of running back LaDainian Tomlinson in 2001. He became the NFL’s best running back fro a time and was the face of the franchise until his release in 2010.

In 2004, the Chargers made the best of Eli Manning not wanting to play for them. San Diego held the No. 1 pick, took Manning and then packaged him in a deal with the New York Giants that brought QB Philip Rivers to the Chargers. Rivers has developed into the new face of the franchise in San Diego.

If you have a better option than what we have listed, hit Other in the SportsNation poll and let us know in the comments section.