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The 1980 San Diego Chargers season was the franchise's 11th season in the National Football League (NFL), and its 21st overall. the team failed to improve on their 12–4 record in 1979 and finished 11-5. They won their first playoff game in 17 years. The season ended with loss to the Raiders in the playoffs.

1980 San Diego Chargers season
Head coachDon Coryell
(3rd season)
General managerJohnny Sanders
(Since 1976)
OwnerEugene V. Klein
(Since 1966)
Home fieldJack Murphy Stadium
Results
Record11–5
Division place1st AFC West
Playoff finishWon Divisional Playoffs (Bills) (20–14)
Lost Conference Championship (Raiders) (27–34)
Pro Bowlers
AP All-Pros

Dan Fouts broke his own record with over 4,500 yards passing, with 30 touchdowns. The Chargers finished #1 in total offense #2 in scoring. The defensive unit finished #6, leading the NFL with 60 QB sacks. The Chargers finished 11-5, winning the tiebreaker with the Oakland Raiders for the AFC West crown.

To help bolster a sagging running game, Running back Chuck Muncie was traded from the New Orleans Saints mid-season.[3]

The Chargers Achilles heel that season was turnovers which they led the league in giveaways. In the Divisional Round against Buffalo, a 50-yard touchdown pass from Fouts to Ron Smith in the final 3 minutes of the game lifted the Chargers to a 20-14 win. In the AFC Championship Game, big plays and turnovers got the Chargers down, 28 to 7. The Chargers comeback fell short as the Raiders hung on to win 34-27, with Oakland running out the final 7 minutes of the 4th quarter.

Contents

1980 NFL DraftEdit

1980 San Diego Chargers draft
Round Pick Player Position College Notes
4 101 Ed Luther  Quarterback San Jose State
      Made roster    †   Pro Football Hall of Fame    *   Made at least one Pro Bowl during career

RosterEdit

1980 San Diego Chargers final roster
Quarterbacks

Running backs

Wide receivers

Tight ends

Offensive linemen

Defensive linemen

Linebackers

Defensive backs

Special teams

Reserve lists



Practice squad



Rookies in italics
53 Active, 5 Inactive, 5 Practice squad

Regular seasonEdit

ScheduleEdit

Week Date Opponent Result Attendance
1 September 7, 1980 at Seattle Seahawks W 34–13
62,042
2 September 14, 1980 Oakland Raiders W 30–24
51,943
3 September 21, 1980 at Denver Broncos W 30–13
74,970
4 September 28, 1980 at Kansas City Chiefs W 24–7
45,161
5 October 5, 1980 Buffalo Bills L 26–24
51,982
6 October 12, 1980 at Oakland Raiders L 38–24
44,826
7 October 19, 1980 New York Giants W 44–7
50,397
8 October 26, 1980 at Dallas Cowboys L 42–31
60,639
9 November 2, 1980 at Cincinnati Bengals W 31–14
46,406
10 November 9, 1980 Denver Broncos L 20–13
51,435
11 November 16, 1980 Kansas City Chiefs W 20–7
50,248
12 November 20, 1980 at Miami Dolphins W 27–24
63,013
13 November 30, 1980 Philadelphia Eagles W 22–21
51,567
14 December 7, 1980 at Washington Redskins L 40–17
48,556
15 December 13, 1980 Seattle Seahawks W 21–14
49,980
16 December 22, 1980 Pittsburgh Steelers W 26–17
51,785

PlayoffsEdit

Week Date Opponent Result Attendance
Divisional January 3, 1981 Buffalo Bills W 20–14
52,028
Conference Championship January 11, 1981 Oakland Raiders L 34–27
52,428

Game summariesEdit

Week 2Edit

1 2 34OTTotal
Raiders 3 7 77024
Chargers 3 7 014630

at San Diego Stadium, San Diego

SD: Glen Edwards 2 INT, Willie Buchanon INT

Week 3Edit

1 234Total
• Chargers 3 2430 30
Broncos 3 370 13

[4]

Week 6Edit

Week Six: San Diego Chargers at Oakland Raiders – Game summary
1 2 34Total
Chargers 7 3 7724
Raiders 7 10 71438

at Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum, Oakland, California

  • Date: October 12
  • Game time: 1:00 p.m.
  • Game weather: 62 F, wind 8 mph
  • Game attendance: 44,826
  • Referee: Ben Dreith
  • TV: NBC
  • Box Score

Week 7Edit

1 234Total
Giants 0 070 7
• Chargers 0 21716 44

[5]

Divisional playoffsEdit

January 3, 1981Edit

AFC: San Diego Chargers 20, Buffalo Bills 14Edit

Game summary
1 2 34Total
Bills 0 14 0014
Chargers 3 0 71020

at Jack Murphy Stadium, San Diego

Conference championshipsEdit

January 11, 1981Edit

AFC Championship: Oakland Raiders 34, San Diego Chargers 27Edit

Game summary
1 2 34Total
Raiders 21 7 3334
Chargers 7 7 10327

at Jack Murphy Stadium, San Diego

StandingsEdit

AFC West
W L T PCT DIV CONF PF PA STK
San Diego Chargers(1) 11 5 0 .688 6–2 9–3 418 327 W2
Oakland Raiders(4) 11 5 0 .688 6–2 9–3 364 306 W2
Kansas City Chiefs 8 8 0 .500 4–4 6–8 319 336 W1
Denver Broncos 8 8 0 .500 3–5 5–7 310 323 W1
Seattle Seahawks 4 12 0 .250 1–7 3–9 291 408 L9

Awards and recordsEdit

  • John Jefferson, NFL Leader in Receiving Yards, (1,340)
  • Kellen Winslow, Second in NFL in Receiving Yards, (1,290)

MilestonesEdit

  • The San Diego Chargers became the first team in NFL history to have three of its receivers with over 1,000 receiving yards.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "1980 NFL Pro Bowlers". Pro-Football-Reference.com.
  2. ^ "1980 NFL All-Pros". Pro-Football-Reference.com.
  3. ^ Williamson, Bill (May 14, 2013). "Chuck Muncie was a memorable Charger". ESPN.com. Archived from the original on May 16, 2013.
  4. ^ Pro-Football-Reference.com
  5. ^ Pro-Football-Reference.com

External linksEdit