Nov 10, 2011; San Diego, CA, USA; San Diego Chargers and Oakland Raiders fans in costumes pose during the game at Qualcomm Stadium. The Raiders defeated the Chargers 24-17. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee/Image of Sport-USA TODAY Sports

AFCW history: Raiders v. Chargers, bitter rivals face off again

September 10, 2012; Oakland, CA, USA; Oakland Raiders running back Darren McFadden (20) is tackled by San Diego Chargers linebacker Demorrio Williams (58) during the first half at Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

There is nothing better than division rivalries! Each team seems to amp up their efforts during the week in anticipation for that Sunday or Monday Night battle. This energy is felt throughout  the teams and also resonates to the fan bases. When it comes to rivalries, very few have the same historical impact than the Oakland Raiders and the San Diego Chargers. True, the AFC West as a whole has long standing bitter rivalries between all four teams. There is no love lost when you have been battling a foe since 1960.

As a die hard Raider fan, this is the game that I mark on my calendar each year. I understand that other Raiders fans will point to the Chiefs or the Broncos as their ultimate team to despise and I can respect that. But for me, nothing beats Raiders/Chargers twice a year. There is a long standing history that is interwoven between the two teams and they are both California teams so that presents an in state rivalry.

To start off, Raiders  legend Al Davis got his first start in the pros under the tutelage of Sid Gillman, in 1960 as an offensive coach. During that time, Al would be credited for acquiring future Charger legend and Hall of Famer, Lance Allworth. When Allworth was inducted in the Hall of Fame, guess he chose to be his presenter?  Al Davis. During his brief time with the Chargers, Davis would come to love the vertical passing game developed by Gillman and his early schemes that would later be called the West Coast offense. As we all know, Al would move on to better fortunes and would become owner and coach of the Oakland Raiders.  Al Saunders, currently the Raiders  Senior Offensive Assistant also has ties to San Diego. He served as WR coach, assistant head coach and head coach of the Chargers in the 80′s before bouncing around the league and finding a home with Oakland in 2011.  This year, rookie WR Keenan Allen was skewered by Chargers after he posted a picture of himself sporting a Raiders hat after he was drafted as their third overall player.  Hilarious if you ask me.

On the field, there have been many battles between these two franchises. From a historical perspective, there are three that come to mind. The Raiders would later call the game on Sept 10, 1978 as the Holy Roller, while Charger fans would come to call it the totally unimaginative nickname of the Immaculate Deception.  I guess in homage to another  Raider game  just six years earlier. The second game that stands out in this great rivalry is the 1980 AFC championship game between these two teams. San Diego came in as the number one seed and the Raiders wound up with a wild card spot. After the Raiders built a 28-7 lead, the Chargers would come back to make it a game but would ultimately fall short 34-27. The Raiders went on to win their second Super Bowl and the Chargers would go home. In 2011,  the Raiders had a chance to win the AFC West, get into the playoffs and snap an eight year streak without a winning record. All they had to do  was win the season finale over their old foe. Sadly, that would not happen as the Raiders would fall 38-26, and the losing seasons would continue.

Over the years, each team has enjoyed complete dominance over the other. Recently, the Chargers would post an amazing 13 game win streak against the Raiders.  From 2003 to 2010 the Chargers would own the Raiders. For me, this is part of the reason I have a deep disdain for the Chargers, I happened to be at the Coliseum  in 2003 and again in 2010. You can read that story here.  As impressive as that was, The Raiders still come out on top as they own a 14 game win streak against the Chargers.In the last three years, the teams have split their last six games and the games have been decided by a combined total of 23 points.

As to their overall head to head record, the Raiders own a comfortable plus ten winning advantage over the Chargers (57-47-2). Despite that 13 game win streak that Charger fans like to brag about, that doesn’t add up to much in the big scheme of things. Lets not also forget that the Raiders hold a plus three advantage on the stat that really counts, Super Bowls. Now I could say that the Chargers have never won anything significant in their existence but that would be lying. The Chargers managed one AFL championship in 1963 so kudos to them. Oh yeah, they also took four tries to get there. Congratulations! The Raiders also have one of those, they won it in 1967. To recap, it is four championship’s to one or three to zero if you are only counting Super Bowl era.

The state rivalry comes to mind as both teams at one point in their histories called Los Angeles home. The Chargers resided in LA from 1960-1961 while the Raiders would call LA home from 1982-1994. With talks always surfacing about a team in the LA area, both teams are always mentioned as possible suitors to return. Because of the Raiders time in LA, the Raiders created a loyal fan base in southern California. These loyal fans make the short trek every year to San Diego to what I call the Raiders ninth home game. While each team has their loyal fan base ,one more loyal than the other, there is no denying that the Raider Nation shows up in droves to Qualcomm Stadium every year. Having been to a couple of “away” games in San Diego, I can tell you that the stadium is at least fifty percent Raiders fans. I know Charger fans hate this, but over the years I know they have gotten used to it.


I am anticipating that the outcome will live up to the greatness of what a rivalry game should be. These teams don’t like each other, the fans don’t like each other and that is the way it should be. I wouldn’t want it any other way, it shouldn’t be any other way.

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Tags: AFC West AFL Oakland Raiders San Diego Chargers

  • DF Rellom

    Its gonna be another close game, but Raiders will step up and win. I also predict Rivers is gonna have another fit and throw his helmet all over that place and yell at his coaches!!! ha


    Thanks for reading my post DF Rellom.
    Phyliss Rivers is always good for crying about something. I’m sure he’ll have his whining face on and ready to go. I think it’ll be close too. If our defense steps up and Pryor starts, we should be able to get the win.

  • Silvia Arredondo

    I love playing against the emotion player aka Phillip Rivers. I hope we get a couple sacks because he looks hilarious when he’s pissed haha


    Thanks for your continued support Silvia.
    We definitely have to put some pressure on him and make him uncomfortable. I think we can take this game considering they just had two big injuries on both sides of the ball (Freeny and Floyd) and we have guys that are coming back from being injured/suspended (Pryor, Watson,Holmes and Reece)

  • Berdj Rassam

    Not sure which team will win but it should be a close game.


    Thanks for reading my post Berdj.
    I too think it’ll be close, I’m biased for whom I would like to win. If it comes down to a FG, I will be nervous considering Janokowski is missing all over the field this season and hasn’t shown to be automatic like in years past. I’m hoping that him and King can overcome whatever holding issues they have.

  • Tim Aebi

    Just a thought – “Phyliss” Rivers (stupidly disrespectful and the reason I’m writing) was just awarded his 2nd AFC Player of the Week award – oh yeah, in just the first 4 weeks of the season. Get ready to be taken apart Raider Nation. As a transplanted San Diegan, I’ve lived in the Bay Area for 20 years and actually have a lot of respect for Al Davis and his accomplishments (my wife’s family was one of the original owners). That said, this “Phyliss” moniker is BS – and makes it all the sweeter when Sunday’s game ends VERY lop sided. It will be sweet. Go Chargers!


    Hopefully you read the article and not just the comments section. If so, thanks for reading it. I always appreciate opposing fans comments.
    If you can’t handle a little smack talking about your team then I don’t know what to tell you- that’s part of what football is about for the fans. With that being said, you can’t deny that Rivers has a reputation for whining and crying about plays that don’t go his way. Am I wrong about that? So yes the moniker does fit- “Phyliss” like a crying little girl. Or would you prefer his other moniker Philip “Cry Me a Rivers”?
    As to his two weekly accomplishments so far, congrats to him but those awards don’t mean anything in the grand scheme of things. If the Chargers fail to make the playoffs do you think he’s going to say “Yeah but I won the AFC player of the week X amount of times”.
    As my article stated, the last six games have been decided by a total of 23 points so I don’t think it’ll be lopsided. Plus the Chargers two wins have been against defenses ranked in the 20′s or lower, which is where the Chargers also rank (30th, 7th in offense). When they play against teams with better defenses, they have lost, you know who they are. The Raiders rank 18th in D and 17th in offense. Based on that alone, I stand by my prediction of a close game. Throw in the fact that the coaches are very familiar with each other from their days in Denver, McCoy on offense and Allen on defense…I call it close. Lastly, Freeny and Floyd have been placed on IR for your team and those two were productive for the team, on each side of the ball. Guess we’ll find out on Sunday.

  • ECAVILLE/Ace of Spades

    I like the references to the “Grand Scheme of Things”. Philip Rivers has a lot of haters and doubters from all sides. He lets his emotions get the best of him but this is an emotional game. In the grand scheme of things the Chargers are dangerous and capable of beating any team in their path. Raiders will not be underestimated at all. Our Capitan will tear up the Raiders with Keenan Allen(Raiders fan) Mike Harris(Raiders fan), Royal, Woodhead, Ladarias Green, Gates. Chargers football is exciting to watch. Team is gelling at the right time with a next man up mentality. Raiders need to recognize game right now cuz the Bolts are balling right now. Anything could happen any given Sunday so we will see. This season seems special to me for a very good reason. Even my fellow fans doubt our team but I don’t doubt them at all. Even if the Chargers get a championship this year Raiders will still flaunt the two they have more. Thats ok though cuz in the grand scheme of things this year… Chargers are lightyears ahead of the (Raiders Commitment to Failure) BOLT UP!


    Ecaville/Ace of Spades,
    Thanks for reading my post. you’re right, football is an emotional game for both the players and the fans. How many years have you been saying “Chargers football is exciting to watch”? Only to be disappointed again. All the hype none of the glory. At least with my team, I can admit that we aren’t very good and as such, expectations aren’t high. So it is possible to sneak up on teams. Your fellow fans are right to doubt your team because history has shown that they can’t get it done. I doubt that they will win the championship this year, Denver’s offense is red hot and KC’s defense is smothering. Those two alone create problems for both of our teams. I wouldn’t say light years ahead because your defense stinks (30th in the league) and last I checked QB’s aren’t supposed to kick footballs like a soccer ball. Rivers should know that it’s football not futbol.

  • ECAVILLE/Ace of Spades

    I stay loyal to my team. FARFROMABANDWAGONER. I have been disappointed many times by my team. Don’t believe I will be disappointed with Telesco, McCoy, and the rest of the coaching staff. They are consistent and focused on winning football games. That’s what it’s all about. Phillip Rivers is just as good as Peyton Manning in this system Chargers have. Don’t underestimate my teams running abilities either, best believe they will run all over your field.