The Chargers bandwagon was overflowing Monday as players and fans changed their focus from Sunday's National Football League playoff victory to the challenge posed by the team's next opponent.
San Diego Interim Mayor Todd Gloria, a self-professed non-sports fan, got into the act by asking city employees to wear Chargers colors or gear.
"As the San Diego Chargers continue their push for a Super Bowl title, I encourage all city employees to show your support for our Bolts and wear your Chargers gear or Charger team colors, as appropriate, this Friday, January 10th," Gloria wrote in a memo. "Our Chargers will be taking on the Denver Broncos at 1:40 p.m. on Sunday. Let's beat those Broncos!"
Last week, Gloria made a bet with Cincinnati's mayor, with San Diego craft beer on the line. With the Chargers' win Sunday over the Bengals, Gloria is set to receive chili, ice cream and barbecue from the Queen City.
Gloria had not heard from the Cincinnati mayor's office by late afternoon, nor has he made a bet with Denver Mayor Michael Hancock, according to spokesman Alex Roth.
Travel packages have sold out, but game tickets are still available, according to broadcast reports.
Ramona resident Daniel Muse told NBC7/39 that he and a friend spent $190 each on "nosebleed seats" at Sports Authority Field in Denver and will drive to the Mile High City.
"It was just kind of really spur of the moment," Muse said. "My friend looked at me and he's like 'wanna go to Denver?' and I'm like 'yeah, let's go."'
At a news conference, Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers said being greeted by fans upon their arrival in San Diego Sunday night was "cool and exciting."
He said an even bigger crowd will show up if they beat the Broncos.
"It's fun, it's like a pep rally there when you get off the bus five or six hours after a win," Rivers said. "It gave you another little rush there, and adrenaline there, five hours after the finish."
He said there's been nothing magical about the Chargers' five-game winning streak, other than they're playing better football. Taking on Denver and quarterback Peyton Manning will be an "awesome" challenge, he said.
Also today, the San Diego Blood Bank announced it would pass out free Chargers Blood Drive XXXV T-shirts to donors at the bank's donor centers and bloodmobile as long as the team is still alive in the NFL playoffs.
The shirts will become available on Thursday. Donors must be at least 17 years old and weigh at least 114 pounds.
-City News Service
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