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Chronology 2000-present

1959-1969 1970-1979 1980-1989 1990-1999 2000-Today



Jan. 2 The Chargers finish the 1999 regular season with a 12-6 win in Denver, giving San Diego an overall record of 8-8 and a intra-division mark of 5-3, the best in the AFC West. The win in Denver is the team's first since 1994, and the 8-8 mark is the team's best since 1996.
March 22 The Spanos family and the Chargers announce the contribution of more than $3 million toward the new Chargers Champions community outreach initiative benefiting students, schools and educators who are "making the difference" for San Diego's future. Chargers Champions also encompasses the team's ongoing support of youth and high school football as well as its long-standing community service programs, such as the Blood Drive.
April 25 Bobby Beathard, who helped guide the Chargers to Super Bowl XXIX as well as two AFC Western Division Championships and three playoff appearances during his 10 years as general manager, retires after 37 years in the NFL. Beathard is replaced by Ed McGuire, who is named Vice President of Football Operations by team President Dean Spanos.
May 30 The Chargers honor 22 local high school juniors as the first Chargers Champions for demonstrating leadership, service, citizenship and commitment in their schools and communities. Each student receives a college tuition scholarship of $7,500 as well as a state-of-the-art laptop computer.
June 6 The Spanos family contributes $250,000 through Chargers Champions to create and fund freshman football and freshman volleyball in San Diego City Schools beginning in Fall, 2000.


Jan. 5 Dean Spanos names John Butler as the team's new executive vice president and general manager. Butler, the former general manager of the Buffalo Bills, began his NFL career in 1985 as staff scout with the Chargers. During his tenure in Buffalo, the Bills reached the playoffs 10 times and played in four Super Bowls.
Jan. 9 Norv Turner, the former head coach of the Washington Redskins, is named offensive coordinator by head coach Mike Riley. Turner, who has 16 years of NFL coaching experience, helped lead Dallas to back-to-back Super Bowl championships in 1992 and '93 as the Cowboys offensive coordinator.
March 9 The Bolts sign Pro Bowl quarterback Doug Flutie, yet another free agent from Buffalo, to a six-year contract. Flutie arrives in San Diego after three seasons with the Bills where he had a record of 21-9 as the team's starting quarterback. Flutie also spent eight seasons in the Canadian Football League where he was the CFL's Most Outstanding Player an unprecedented six times and won three Grey Cup championships.
April 20 On the heels of a 1-15 season, the Chargers trade the top pick in the 2001 NFL Draft to the Atlanta Falcons in exchange for the Falcons' first-round pick (fifth overall) and third-round selection in the 2001 draft. The Chargers also obtained wide receiver/kick returner Tim Dwight and the Falcons' second-round pick in the 2002 draft.
April 22 The Chargers use their top two selections in the draft to select two Heisman Trophy finalists, running back LaDainian Tomlinson of Texas Christian University and quarterback Drew Brees of Purdue.


Jan. 29 The Chargers name Marty Schottenheimer as the team's 13th head coach.
April 20 The Chargers select standout cornerback Quentin Jammer from the University of Texas in the first round of the NFL Draft. The team later adds gigantic offensive guard Toniu Fonoti from Nebraska and big-play wide receiver Reche Caldwell from the University of Florida.
April 25 The Chargers sign free agent linebacker Donnie Edwards, a Chula Vista native, to a five-year contract with an option for a sixth year. In his first season with the Chargers, Edwards would lead the squad with 129 tackles and five interceptions and was selected to play in his first-career Pro Bowl.
May 9 The Chargers announce that the team has signed a five-year agreement to hold their training camp at the Home Depot National Training Center on the campus of California State University, Dominguez Hills beginning in 2003. It will be the eighth training camp site in the 44-year history of the Chargers.
May 14 Dean Spanos announces that the Chargers have hired Mark Fabiani as the team's Special Counsel to the President. Fabiani's primary function with the club is to work with the San Diego community to explore opportunities for a new state-of-the-art football stadium in the San Diego region.
Sept. 8 Schottenheimer leads the Chargers to a 34-6 victory over the Cincinnati Bengals in his debut, becoming just the fourth head coach in team history to win his first game. Schottenheimer would lead the Chargers to four straight victories to open the season, becoming the only coach in team history to win his first four games.
Nov. 3 Bobby Ross and Stan Humphries are inducted as the 25th and 26th members of the Chargers' Hall of Fame in halftime ceremonies of game against New York Jets.
Dec. 1 LaDainian Tomlinson rushes for a team-record 220 yards against Denver at Qualcomm Stadium.
Dec. 8 Tomlinson rushes for 57 yards against Oakland, raising his season total to 1,375, which eclipses Natrone Means' previous team record of 1,350 yards in the 1994 season. Tomlinson would close out the season with 1,683 yards en route to being selected to the AFC Pro Bowl squad.
Dec. 22 Junior Seau plays in his 200th career game, tying Russ Washington's team record.


Jan. 26 Super Bowl XXXVII is played at Qualcomm Stadium and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers defeat the Oakland Raiders, 48-21, to capture their first ever Super Bowl Championship.
March 4 The Chargers activate the trigger in their lease agreement with the City of San Diego for Qualcomm Stadium to begin negotiations to replace the 36-year-old stadium.
March 7 The Chargers sign Pro Bowl wide receiver David Boston to a seven-year contract.
April 11 Chargers General Manager John Butler succumbs after a nine-month battle with cancer.
April 16 Chargers trade Junior Seau to Miami Dolphins for undisclosed choice in 2004 NFL Draft.
April 22 A.J. Smith is promoted to Executive Vice President-General Manager, replacing his close friend John Butler who lost a nine-month battle with cancer on April 11.
June 2 Smith names Buddy Nix Assistant General Manager-Director of Player Personnel.
July 22 The Chargers open training camp at the Home Depot Center in Carson, California, after spending the previous 27 training camps (1976-2002) at the University of California, San Diego in La Jolla.
Oct. 27 The Chargers' Monday Night Football game against the Miami Dolphins is moved to Arizona's Sun Devil Stadium while Qualcomm Stadium is used as an evacuation site during the devastating wildfires that ravage San Diego County. Fans are admitted to Sun Devil Stadium free of charge and volunteers collect donations for fire relief at the gates. More than $225,000 is raised. The Dolphins win the game, 26-10.
Oct. 31 Alex Spanos makes a $1 million donation to the San Diego Fire Relief Fund.
Nov. 9 Louie Kelcher becomes the 27th member to be inducted into the Chargers' Hall of Fame at halftime of the game against the Minnesota Vikings.
Dec. 14 LaDainian Tomlinson amasses 195 total yards from scrimmage against Green Bay to raise his season total to 2,011 and in the process becomes the first player in team history and only the eighth player in NFL history to record consecutive 2,000-yard seasons.
Dec. 28 LaDainian Tomlinson rushes for a team-record 243 yards in a season-ending 21-14 win over the Raiders. Tomlinson also catches eight passes against Oakland to become the first player in NFL history to rush for 1,000 yards and catch 100 passes in the same season.


Jan. 16 Wade Phillips is introduced as the team's new defensive coordinator.
April 24 With first overall selection, San Diego selects QB Eli Manning in NFL Draft and trades him to the New York Giants for QB Philip Rivers, taken with the fifth-overall choice, along with the Giants' third-round choice in 2004 and first and fifth-round choices in '05.
July 2 Chargers and City of San Diego announce a new lease agreement that brings an end to the controversial seat guaranty. The new lease runs through 2008 and helps pave the way for a referendum to give San Diegans an opportunity to vote for a new football-only stadium for San Diego in 2006.
July 26 Guard Ed White and center Don Macek are chosen as the 32nd and 33rd members for induction into the Chargers Hall of Fame.
July 30 Chargers open training camp at The Home Depot Center.
Aug. 14 The Chargers preseason game against the Indianapolis Colts is blacked out locally. It's the first home game to be blacked out on local television since the Sept. 27, 1998 game against the New York Giants. As part of the team's lease agreement with the City of San Diego, all local television blackouts had been lifted since Oct. 18, 1998.
Oct. 29 Chargers acquire Keenan McCardell in trade with Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Oct. 31 Drew Brees has record-setting day against rival Oakland, completing 22 of 25 for 281 yards with five touchdowns and no interceptions in 42-14 win over Raiders. Brees finishes game with career-high passer rating of 153.1 and is named AFC Offensive Player of the Week.
Nov. 15 Chargers name Jim Steeg executive vice president and chief operating officer.
Dec. 16 Chargers announce training camp will move to Chargers Park beginning in 2005; move ends two-year stint at The Home Depot Center in Carson, California.
Dec. 19 Chargers clinch first AFC West title since 1994 with 21-0 win at Cleveland on cold, snowy day; game-time temperature is 18 degrees with wind-chill factor of -10 degrees. Chargers record first shutout since Nov. 29, 1993 at Indianapolis.
Dec. 22 Drew Brees, Antonio Gates and LaDainian Tomlinson are selected to the AFC Pro Bowl squad.
Dec. 26 Chargers lose to Indianapolis 34-31 in overtime, to snap eight-game winning streak, tied for second-longest winning streak in team history.


Jan. 7 Alex Spanos makes $150,000 donation to provide aid to victims of devastating tsunami that rocked Southeast Asia on Dec. 26, 2004.
Jan. 8 Chargers host Wild Card Playoff Game against New York Jets, first home playoff game since Dec. 31, 1995; Chargers lose in overtime, 20-17. 
Jan 14 Chargers and Head Coach Marty Schottenheimer agree on two-year contract extension through 2007. 
March 7 Dean Spanos extends contract of General Manager A.J. Smith through 2009 season. 
July 29 Training camp opens for the first time at Chargers Park.
Sept. 18 LaDainian Tomlinson scores a rushing touchdown in his 14th straight game, setting a new NFL record. 
Oct. 2 The Chargers rout New England, 41-17, to end the Patriots’ NFL-record 21-game home winning streak. 
Oct. 10 The Chargers set a new single-game attendance record at Qualcomm Stadium when 68,537 fans turn out to see the Chargers face the Pittsburgh Steelers on Monday Night Football. 
Oct. 16 Tomlinson catches a 35-yard touchdown pass to tie Lenny Moore’s NFL record of 18 straight games with a touchdown. 
Nov. 20 The Chargers retire jersey No. 19 in honor of Hall of Fame wide receiver Lance Alworth at halftime of the team’s game against the Buffalo Bills. It becomes only the second number retired in team history, joining Dan Fouts’ No. 14. 
Dec. 18 The Chargers defeat unbeaten Indianapolis by a score of 26-17, ending the Colts’ 13-0 start to the season. It had been only the fourth time in NFL history that a team had started a season 13-0. 
Dec. 31 In the 2005 season finale against Denver, Tomlinson passes Alworth to become the team’s all-time leader in total yards from scrimmage. Tomlinson also scores his 20th touchdown of the season against the Broncos, breaking Chuck Muncie’s 25-year-old team record for single-season touchdowns. 
Dec. 31 The Chargers finish the 2005 season with the NFL’s top-ranked run defense, allowing only 84.3 yards per game. During the season, the Chargers held three different teams to less than 40 yards rushing. It was the first time that had happened in franchise history since 1965.
Jan. 4 Shawne Merriman is named Defensive Rookie of the Year by the Associated Press. He receives 28.5 of 50 votes to become only the second Charger to win the award, joining Leslie O’Neal, who won it in 1986. 
Feb 12 Six Chargers play in the 2006 Pro Bowl at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu Hawaii. It is the most Chargers to appear in the NFL’s all-star game since 1983. The NFC wins the game, 23-17. 
May 1 The San Diego City Council amends the Chargers’ lease with the city, allowing the team to explore options for a new stadium within the County of San Diego. 
May 9 Dean Spanos is presented with the 44th annual Golden Achievement Award by the Boys & Girls Clubs of San Diego during a dinner at the San Diego Marriott Hotel and Marina. 
Sept. 11 The Chargers open the season with a 27-0 win over the Oakland Raiders before a sellout crowd at McAfee Coliseum and a national-television audience on ESPN. It’s their first shutout win over the Raiders since 1961. 
Oct. 8 The Chargers defeat the defending Super Bowl Champion Pittsburgh Steelers, 23-13, before a crowd of 67,837 at Qualcomm Stadium and a national-television audience tuned in to NBC’s Sunday Night Football.
Oct. 15 LaDainian Tomlinson ties a team record with four touchdowns against San Francisco. He also becomes the team’s all-time touchdowns leader, passing Lance Alworth.
Nov. 12 The Chargers overcome a 21-point first-half deficit and defeat the Cincinnati Bengals, 49-41, in front of a stunned crowd at Paul Brown Stadium. The Bolts trailed 28-7 at the half and outscored Cincinnati, 42-13, in the second half. 
Nov. 19 Tomlinson scores four touchdowns in a 35-27 win at Denver. He sets a new NFL record as he becomes the first player to score four touchdowns in three games in a season. The touchdowns are the 99th, 100th, 101st and 102nd of his career and he becomes the fastest player in NFL history to score 100 times (89 games). The Chargers overcome a 17-point deficit in the third quarter, 24-7, to become the first team in league history to overcome 17-point deficits in consecutive weeks. 
Nov. 26 Tomlinson scores his 20th and 21st rushing TDs of the season to set a new team record.
Dec. 10 Tomlinson scores three touchdowns against Denver to set a new NFL record for single-season touchdowns (29). The Chargers win the game, 48-20, to claim their second AFC West title in the last three seasons.
Dec. 17 Tomlinson scores the 99th and 100th rushing touchdowns of his career becoming the fastest player in NFL history to reach 100. On his first touchdown of the game, Tomlinson break’s Paul Hornung’s NFL record for points in a season, which was set in 1960. He scores his second touchdown of the game on a career-long 85-yard run to set new NFL single-season record for rushing touchdowns (28). The 85-yard run is the third-longest in team history and the longest since 1962. Tomlinson sets a new NFL record with eight consecutive multi-touchdown games. 
Dec. 24 The Chargers set a new team record when they win their 13th game of the season. The Bolts defeat the Seattle Seahawks, 20-17, at Qwest Field on a 37-yard touchdown pass from Philip Rivers to Vincent Jackson with 29 seconds left to play. The Bolts would go on to close out the season with a win over Arizona for their 14th win of the year. 

Dec. 31

The Chargers defeat the Arizona Cardinals, 27-20, clinching home-field advantage in the playoffs as the number-one seed for only the third time in team history (1979 & ’80). Marty Schottenheimer wins the 200th regular-season game of his career. Tomlinson finishes the season with 1,815 yards to claim his first NFL rushing title. Shawne Merriman records his 17th sack of the season to claim the league’s sack title. The Bolts finish the season with 492 points, most in the NFL and a new team record.


Jan. 4 LaDainian Tomlinson is named the NFL’s Most Valuable Player and the Offensive Player of the Year by the Associated Press. He is the first player in team history to be named MVP by the AP. Tomlinson scored an NFL-record 31 touchdowns in 2006. Jan. 14–A team-record 68,810 fans fill Qualcomm Stadium for an AFC Divisional Playoff game against the New England Patriots. The Patriots win the game, 24-21. 
Feb. 2 Tomlinson and former Chargers quarterback Drew Brees are named co-recipients of the 2006 Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Award. It is the only league award that recognizes both off the field community service as well as playing excellence. Tomlinson is the fourth Charger to be named Man of the Year. 
Feb. 10 A new team-record 10 Chargers appear in the 2007 Pro Bowl. Quarterback Philip Rivers is also selected to play but does not participate due to a foot injury.
Feb. 12 Marty Schottenheimer is relieved of his duties as head coach of the Chargers.
Feb. 19 Norv Turner is hired as the 14th head coach in team history. He immediately hires Ted Cottrell as the team’s defensive coordinator. 
Mar. 14 The Chargers unveil new uniforms for 2007 and beyond at a private fashion show at the U.S. Grant Hotel in San Diego. The new uniforms feature Navy blue jerseys and white pants for most home games, white jerseys and Navy pants for road games, and Powder Blue jerseys with white pants for designated home games. The most noticeable change is a metallic-white helmet that features a Gold bolt which is outlined in both powder blue and Navy. 
Sept. 9 Wearing their new uniforms, the Chargers win their season opener, defeating the defending NFC Champion Chicago Bears, 14-3, before 67,837 at Qualcomm Stadium, the largest crowd ever to watch a home opener in San Diego. 
Oct. 7 The Chargers snap a three-game losing streak with a convincing 41-3 win at Denver’s Invesco Field. It was the Broncos’ worst home loss in 41 years, as well as the Chargers’ biggest win over the Broncos in Denver. 
Oct. 14 LaDainian Tomlinson ties a team record with four touchdowns as the Bolts shut down the Oakland Raiders, 28-14. Oct. 23–As wildfires rage throughout San Diego County and the air in San Diego is filled with smoke, the Chargers fly to Phoenix and spend the next three days practicing at the Arizona Cardinals’ Training Facility in Tempe, AZ.
Oct. 27 Alex and Dean Spanos pledge $1 million to aid victims of the wildfires and support the community’s firefighting efforts. It’s the largest personal financial commitment to the relief effort. The Spanoses made a similar donation following the fires of 2003. 
Oct. 28 Just days after Qualcomm Stadium is cleared as an evacuation site for residents evacuated during the wildfires and with a smoky haze still enveloping the city, the Chargers return home to host the Houston Texans and win the game, 35-10. Antonio Cromartie and Antonio Gates both score two touchdowns for the Bolts.
Nov. 4 Cromartie sets an NFL record for the longest touchdown in NFL history, returning a missed field goal 109 yards for a touchdown on the final play of the first half at Minnesota. 
Nov. 11 The Chargers defeat the defending Super Bowl Champion Indianapolis Colts, 23-21, on a cool and rainy night in San Diego in front of a national television audience on NBC’s Sunday Night Football. Darren Sproles electrifies the home crowd by returning a kickoff and a punt for touchdowns and Cromartie intercepts reigning Super Bowl MVP Peyton Manning three times in the first half, including a highlight-reel-worthy leaping one-handed interception. Manning throws a career-high six interceptions on the night. 
Dec. 9 The Chargers overcome a 14-point fourth-quarter deficit and defeat the Tennessee Titans on the road in overtime, 23-17. The Chargers score the game-tying touchdown with nine seconds left in the fourth quarter and win it on a 16-yard run by LaDainian Tomlinson in overtime.

Dec. 16

The Chargers rout the Detroit Lions, 51-14, to capture their second-straight AFC West title and their third in the last four years. Norv Turner becomes only the second Chargers coach to win the AFC West in his first season at the helm. Following the game, he presents President-CEO Dean Spanos with a Game Ball in the locker room.
Jan. 1 Chargers President-CEO awards General Manager A.J. Smith with a five-year contract extension thru 2014.
Jan. 6 The Chargers overcome a 6-0 halftime deficit and score 17 unanswered points to beat the Tennessee Titans in an AFC Wild Card Playoff game at Qualcomm Stadium. LaDainian Tomlinson scores two touchdowns, including a leaping score from one-yard out to put away the game midway through the fourth quarter. It’s the Chargers’ first playoff victory since 1995. 
Jan. 13 The Chargers shock the football world by knocking the defending Super Bowl Champion Indianapolis Colts out of the playoffs in a Divisional Playoff game, 28-24, in what will be the last-ever game played at the RCA Dome. With Philip Rivers and LaDainian Tomlinson both sidelined with injuries, Darren Sproles and Billy Volek score key late touchdowns, including Volek’s game-winner with 4:50 left in the fourth quarter. San Diego’s defense makes two late-game stands, including one inside the Bolts’ 10-yard line with just over two minutes remaining in the contest.
Jan. 20 The Chargers magical playoff run comes to an end as the Bolts fall to the New England Patriots, 21-12, on a frigid day at Gillette Stadium. Philip Rivers turns in a heroic performance, playing with a torn ACL in his right knee, but the Chargers can only muster four field goals against the Patriots and fall in the conference title game.
Oct. 12 The Chargers induct Fred Dean into the team's Hall of Fame at halftime of the New England game.
Oct. 26 The Chargers play their first-ever regular-season game overseas, taking on the New Orleans Saints before a crowd of 83,226 in London's Wembly Stadium.
Dec. 14 Down 21-10 at the start of the fourth quarter, Philip Rivers rallies the Chargers to a 22-21 come-from-behind win over the Kansas City Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium. After San Diego scored it's first TD, Antwan Applewhite forces a fumble on the onside kick and Kassim Osgood recovers to set up the game-winning touchdown drive.
Dec. 21 Flying home from Tampa Bay following a 41-24 win over the Buccaneers, the Chargers learn that Buffalo has upset Denver at Invesco Field, setting up an AFC West title game with the Broncos on Dec. 28.
Dec. 28 Before a stadium-record crowd of 69,131, the Chargers rush for a team-record 289 yards and stomp the Broncos, 52-21, at Qualcomm Stadium to claim the AFC West crown. The Bolts become the first-ever team in NFL history to go to the playoffs after starting 4-8. San Diego also becomes the first NFL team since divisions were aligned in 1967 to come back and win their division when trailing by three games with three games left to play.
Jan. 3 Down 17-14 entering the fourth quarter, San Diego rallies for a game-tying field goal and defeats Indianapolis in overtime, 23-17, in an AFC Wild Card Playoff game at Qualcomm Stadium. Sproles racks up 328 all-purpose yards and winds it with a 22-yard touchdown in overtime.
Aug. 24 Rivers signs a six-year contract extension through 2015.
Sept. 14 Sproles racks up 246 total yards and his five-yard touchdown run with 18-seconds remaining gives the Chargers a 24-20 season opening win in Oakland on ESPN's Monday Night Football.
Nov. 8 Rivers' 18-yard touchdown pass to Vincent Jackson with 21 seconds left caps a 21-20 comeback vicroty over the N.Y. Giants at the Medowlands. Rivers drives the offense 80 yards in 1:46 for the game-winner and Merriman ends it with an 11-yard sack of Eli Manning.
Nov. 22 A 3.5-game deficit is erased and the Chargers take over first place in the AFC West following a 32-3 thrashing of Denver at Invesco Field.
Nov. 27 The 53 Greatest Chargers of All-Time, as voted on by fans and the media are honored at a Block Party in the Gaslamp District of Downtown San Diego. They are also introduced at the Kansas City game two days later and the current Bolts honor their alumni with a 43-14 win.
Dec. 20 Kaeding's 52-yard field goal with three seconds left is good for a 27-24 win over Cincinnati. Moments later, Oakland upsets Denver at Invesco Field and the Chargers officialy clinch their fourth-stright AFC West title.
Dec. 25 A 42-17 win in their first-ever game on Christmas Day improves the Chargers' record to 12-3 and clinches the No. 2 seed in the playoffs.
Jan. 17 The No. 5 seed New York Jets upset the No. 2 Chargers 17-14, in a Divisional Playoff game at Qualcomm Stadium. San Diego leads 7-0 at the half, but the Jets score the next 17 points and hold on for the win.
Feb. 22 After nine seasons in San Diego, including an MVP season in '06, two rushing titles and five Pro Bowls, Tomlinson is realeased. He leaves holding 28 Chargers records, including career rushing yards and touchdowns.