Dean Spanos

Chargers Owner Dean Spanos’ Sister Attempting To Force Sale

There’s been plenty of NFL ownership drama over the past year, and the Broncos are now no longer the only AFC West team with a power struggle going on. The Chargers have entered the fray, as Nathan Fenno of the Los Angeles Times writes.

A sister of Chargers owner Dean Spanos, Dea Spanos Berberian, has filed a petition in Los Angeles County Court asking a judge to force a sale of the team. Fenno writes that Berberian argues “that mounting debt has imperiled the family’s finances and the only solution is to put the NFL franchise on the market.”

Berberian is a trustee of the family trust alongside Spanos, and she “alleges the trust’s debts and expenses exceed” $353MM. “Every day that passes increases the risks that the charitable beneficiaries and the Spanos family legacy will suffer irreparable financial and reputational damage,” if the team isn’t sold, the petition reads.

According to the court filing this has been going on behind the scenes for quite some time, as Spanos told his siblings in a 2019 letter that he would retain an investment bank at the end of the 2024 season to help sell the team. Berberian is attempting to force a move sooner than that, but either way it sounds like the Spanos family won’t be owning the franchise long-term.

That being said, Spanos and two of his other siblings released a defiant statement in response to this filing, which you can read in full here, denouncing Berberian’s effort.

For the three of us the Chargers is one of our family’s most important legacies, just as it was for our parents. Unfortunately, our sister Dea seems to have a different and misguided personal agenda. If Dea no longer wishes to be part of this family legacy, the three of us stand ready to purchase her share of the franchise, as our agreements give us the right to do. In the meanwhile, the operations of the Chargers will be entirely unaffected by this matter, which relates only to the 36 percent share of the team that was owned by our parents,” it reads in part.

Spanos is no stranger to controversy, as he became a very polarizing figure among Chargers fans in San Diego after moving the team to Los Angeles a few years ago. This will take months if not years to fully play out, but we’ll keep you posted.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

AFC West Notes: Bolts, Holton, Henderson

Beginning their second year in Los Angeles, the Chargers are in an interesting spot. They have perhaps as talented a roster as they’ve possessed since their late-2000s run of AFC West titles but play in a soccer stadium and carry likely the NFL’s smallest fan base. The NFL gave Dean Spanos the option of leaving San Diego for L.A. in 2016, and he exercised it once the Bolts’ bid to secure public funding for a downtown stadium failed. But some owners were disappointed Spanos took the league up on the San Diego exit strategy, author Mark Leibovich writes in his new book, “Big Game: The NFL In Dangerous Times” (via Tom Krasovic of the San Diego Union-Tribune). Some of the owners were displeased with the efforts he put forth to land a new stadium deal in San Diego, Leibovich writes, adding this contingent of power brokers were “miffed” the Chargers owner turned the situation into “a towering embarrassment.”

This is an interesting stance considering the NFL gave the Chargers L.A. dibs before the Raiders, but now that the Bolts moved, they don’t appear to be thriving in their new market. That could have been expected given their lack of history in Los Angeles compared to the Rams or Raiders. Krasovic adds some around the league wonder if Spanos will sell the Chargers a few years into their stay at Stan Kroenke‘s Inglewood stadium in believing the franchise’s value will have peaked by then.

Here’s the latest from the AFC West:

  • Joey Bosa‘s official diagnosis is a bone bruise on his left foot, Eric Williams of tweets. The Chargers defensive end is not expected to need surgery, with rest and rehab being the current plan to get the stalwart pass rusher back on the field. He’s not expected to play against the Bills on Sunday, and Anthony Lynn wouldn’t be surprised if he missed more games.
  • Another day, another interesting move from Jon Gruden. The Raiders recently brought back wide receiver Johnny Holton, a backup who played in 31 games for Jack Del Rio‘s final two Oakland teams, but they’re going to try him as a cornerback, OC Greg Olson said (via the Las Vegas Review-Journal’s Michael Gehlken, on Twitter). These type of moves are rare but not unprecedented. That said, Holton — currently on the Raiders’ practice squad — has never played cornerback at any level, per Vic Tafur of The Athletic (via Twitter). A UDFA out of Cincinnati, Holton caught nine passes for 218 yards and three touchdowns last season.
  • The Broncos cut ties with Carlos Henderson, potentially for good, by removing him from their practice squad on Thursday. Vance Joseph said (via Troy Renck of Denver7, on Twitter) this was strictly a football decision and wasn’t related to the 2017 third-round pick’s suspension or his absence from training camp. Only four Broncos 2017 draftees — Garett Bolles, DeMarcus Walker, Jake Butt and Chad Kelly — remain on the active roster. Two others (cornerback Brendan Langley and return man Isaiah McKenzie) are on the practice squad. Henderson has to play in a regular-season game.

Extra Points: Chargers, 49ers, Bills, Bucs

The NFL is “besides itself” over the Chargers’ choice to exit San Diego in favor of Los Angeles last week, a league source told Adam Schefter of ESPN. “There are a ton of owners very upset that [the Chargers] moved,” said another source, who interestingly added the league hopes Chargers owner Dean Spanos realizes he “bungled” the situation and moves the team back to San Diego. Unsurprisingly, the chances of that happening are rather slim, Schefter notes.

More from LA and several other NFL cities:

  • It looks as though the 49ers are “making a huge offer” to reel in Gus Bradley as their defensive coordinator, tweets Drew Copley of CBS47. That jibes with Sporting News’ Alex Marvez report from earlier Friday that there’s “buzz” regarding a Kyle Shanahan-Bradley ticket in San Francisco and runs contrary to the notion that Bradley would’ve only gone to the Niners had they hired Tom Cable as their head coach.
  • The Bills announced Friday that wide receiver Sammy Watkins underwent foot surgery for the second time and will be unavailable until training camp. Watkins’ foot was an issue throughout the 2016 campaign, as the three-year veteran sat out eight games and played injured during the other eight en route to a 28-catch, 430-yard, two-touchdown showing. Like Watkins, Bills pass rusher Shaq Lawson also had surgery – on his knee. Lawson’s procedure was minor and won’t keep him from participating in offseason activites. The 2016 first-round pick from Clemson missed six games as a rookie after undergoing shoulder surgery and didn’t make a significant impact during his initial 10 NFL contests (13 tackles, two sacks).
  • With $65MM-plus in cap space, the Buccaneers will prioritize re-signing their own soon-to-be free agents before the market opens, general manager Jason Licht revealed Friday (via Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times). “We have a track record of rewarding our players that produce, keeping key players that thrive in the system and we have the salary cap flexibility to make it happen,” said Licht. In light of Licht’s statement, Stroud expects the Bucs to make an effort to retain defensive end William Gholston and Jacquies Smith, wide receiver Russell Shepard and cornerback Josh Robinson.
  • Redskins linebacker Ryan Kerrigan had surgery to repair “loose bodies” in his left elbow, he informed John Keim of Kerrigan, who injured his elbow Dec. 19, will need six to eight weeks to recover. The 28-year-old is coming off his second Pro Bowl season, in which he piled up 11 sacks. Kerrigan hasn’t finished with fewer than 7.5 sacks in any of his six seasons.
  • The Chargers will hire Alfredo Roberts as their running backs coach, per Adam Caplan of ESPN (Twitter link). He’ll replace Ollie Wilson, who had been with the Chargers for 14 years. Roberts and new Bolts head coach Anthony Lynn will now work together for a third time – the two were previously on the same staffs in Cleveland and Jacksonville.

Latest On Chargers’ Relocation Decision

Although Dean Spanos on Sunday categorized himself as being closer to taking the Chargers to Los Angeles than keeping them in San Diego, he continues to exhaust options after the city voted down the team’s stadium proposal.

As an exercise in assessing the statuses of potential contributors to a long-sought-after new stadium, the Chargers president met with mayor Kevin Faulconer, county supervisor Ron Roberts and San Diego State Elliot Hirschman, Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune reports. Both the Chargers and the NFL have said they require specifics from city officials before the team makes a decision on L.A., one that as of now needs to be made by Jan. 15.

Acee reports some sources familiar with Spanos’ thinking here continue to say the Inglewood move remains the better bet, but Spanos will not make a decision until after the season ends Jan. 1. Faulconer and Roger Goodell remain in talks. Goodell, though, did not speak highly of proposals coming out of San Diego or Oakland lately. After several months of dormancy, Oakland is now further along in a proposal to keep the Raiders than San Diego is to retain the Chargers after the team’s preferred plan was soundly defeated at the ballot box last month.

The Chargers are preparing to some degree on relocating, securing 3.2 acres in Costa Mesa, Calif., for what would be their headquarters if they moved, Scott Reid of the Orange County Register reports. They are also working with Costa Mesa city officials to secure permits for practice fields nearby, per Reid. Costa Mesa is located near Irvine, nearly 40 miles south of Los Angeles.

Spanos is expected to survey several sites for the Chargers’ Los Angeles/Orange County headquarters, with Costa Mesa expected to receive consideration to become the team’s long-term base site. The Bolts will also have offices in Inglewood in the event they move, Reid reports. However, the agreed-upon lease with the Costa Mesa site would be terminated should the Bolts stay in San Diego. This marks the second time Spanos has sought temporary headquarters in Orange County, having submitted a plan for an indoor practice facility before opting to try for a downtown-San Diego venue.

While San Diego’s now seen as the underdog here despite the Bolts’ roots being there and questions about where they would fall in the Los Angeles sports hierarchy, sources familiar with NFL relocations tell Acee a solution still exists to keep the Chargers where they are — in the nearby suburb of Mission Valley. The Chargers went around the city’s wishes for their new stadium to be located near their current venue in Mission Valley when they went all in on the downtown venture, and Spanos has long said the Mission Valley site is not a workable solution. But some around the league wish the Chargers president would compromise on this issue to help this last-ditch effort by the city.

Sources also told Acee a downtown stadium could work as well, only without the convention center attachment, but the Chargers might be uneasy about making another run at this after the last one fell wildly short of the required votes threshold. The San Diego-based writer added that the recent events — a strange proposal by city council members of a 99-year lease at Qualcomm featuring $1 annual payments by the Chargers, unproductive talks with the city, and Raiders fans enveloping Qualcomm on Sunday in a 19-16 Bolts loss — have left Spanos more despondent than he was after the seminal L.A. vote went the Rams’ way in January.

Acee maintains the NFL will find a way to keep the Chargers where they are, but concrete solutions have yet to emerge on this front with the current L.A. deadline three weeks away.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Latest On Chargers’ Future In San Diego

As signs continue to point to the Chargers moving to Los Angeles, San Diego is making an attempt to keep the only NFL team it’s housed.

Dean Spanos met with San Diego mayor Kevin Faulconer on Wednesday as the sides attempt to exhaust all options to keep the team in the city after the Chargers’ Measure C — for a downtown stadium — fell well short of the threshold needed to secure public money. Faulconer and County Supervisor Ron Roberts appear to have put forth a compromise measure, however.

The local politicians have made an offer to the Chargers for a stadium near their current Mission Valley, Calif., site for $350MM in public money, Tom Krasovic of the San Diego Union-Tribune reports. This is, of course, subject to a vote just as the downtown stadium initiative was in November. But with talk the Chargers will bolt for Los Angeles to share a stadium with the Rams continuing, this represents an effort from the city, one as Krasovic points out is $150MM higher in terms of public funding than Oakland’s recently offered for the last-ditch Raiders venture.

Aside from a meeting with Spanos this week, Faulconer met with another Chargers official and talks are expected to continue. The Bolts’ lease at Qualcomm Stadium runs through 2020, and the team turns a profit while playing there, per Krasovic. So, might they be willing to continue playing there while this plays out? Or would the resounding defeat at the ballot box induce Spanos to eschew this latest development and take the NFL’s relocation offer by January? Prospective contributions from the Chargers and the NFL for this latest stadium effort are not yet known.

The Chargers have until January 15 to decide on this current Los Angeles option — although, there could be an extension, especially with the Raiders connected to Las Vegas — and Spanos said no decision will be made until after the season. But just 43 percent of San Diegans voted for the current stadium, which centered around a hotel tax, when a two-thirds majority was required. Although the Chargers and the city would have more time to promote the next stadium proposal if it comes to that, there’s still a lot of ground to cover with voters who have come out on the other side of this issue.

Last week, Jim Trotter of reported it would “take a miracle” for the Chargers to stay in San Diego despite reports previously linking the team to continuing to play in San Diego in 2017. The Chargers and Rams continue to make progress on an agreement that would permit the Bolts to share the $2.6 billion stadium in Inglewood, so the Bolts are busy on multiple fronts as another season figures to end shy of playoff qualification.


Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

West Notes: Chargers, Berry, Fisher, 49ers

Another Chargers season is barreling toward a postseason exclusion brings relocation talk to the forefront for a second straight year. The 5-7 team may have just four games left in San Diego. However, Dean Spanos has delayed this Los Angeles commitment for a while, and the team’s chairman will continue to exhaust his options before making an official pledge to join Stan Kroenke and the Rams in Inglewood.

Spanos will meet with San Diego mayor Kevin Faulconer, other city officials, and business leaders this week, Ian Rapoport of tweets. The Chargers’ city for the past 55 years, San Diego is viewed as being behind Los Angeles in this race, especially after voters resoundingly shot down their measure for a downtown stadium last month. Although Spanos has not made his decision yet, Rapoport reports (via Twitter) the city needs a strong proposal to keep the Chargers.

A combination of a love for San Diego, wanting to avoid a scenario where the Chargers are the Rams’ tenant in L.A., or possibly a future where the Bolts enter an uncertain period regarding who exactly their fanbase is may work in San Diego’s favor. But the city may need a miracle to keep the Chargers regardless of those factors since the stadium proposal was shot down so emphatically.

Here’s more from the AFC and NFC’s westernmost franchises.

  • The Chiefs balked at meeting Eric Berry‘s asking price this summer and still face a reality where their most popular player departs next year. Berry scored twice today on a pick-6 and a pick-2, if you will, to help the Chiefs upset the Falcons. He will turn 28 later this month, and Terez Paylor of the Kansas City Star writes the team needs to do everything it can to keep the cancer survivor in Kansas City. Thanks largely to a spree of extensions over the past few years, the Chiefs will be up against the cap in 2017, with OverTheCap projecting them to be more than $1MM over the next salary ceiling. This is without Berry or Dontari Poe on the books for next season. It would cost the team $12.967MM to franchise Berry again. That would be the highest safety cap number by over $1MM for 2017.
  • Jeff Fisher confirmed the contract extension he agreed to with the Rams was signed over the summer, Sam Farmer of the Los Angeles Times tweets. “This was done well before the season. It was done well before we had 90,000 people in the Coliseum for our first preseason game,” Fisher said after the Rams’ loss to the Patriots (via Farmer, on Twitter). However, the Rams’ continued regression should not make it a lock the veteran coach is back in Los Angeles next year, Vincent Bonsignore of the Orange County Register writes. Viewing this short extension as a gesture of gratitude for helping shepherd the Rams’ move from St. Louis, Bonsignore still expects Fisher to be coaching for his job in the final month of the season. The Rams will finish at .500 or worse for the 13th straight year, and Fisher helping rebuild the team’s defense in the past five seasons might not be enough to save his job if the offense continues at its current rate, the Los Angeles-area writer notes.
  • Despite Colin Kaepernick being ready to test his value on the free agent market, Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk envisions a path for the polarizing passer back to San Francisco. The sixth-year veteran voiding the contract still leaves the 49ers in charge of his rights until March, so the team could re-sign the 29-year-old quarterback. But that option, per Florio, likely stalls if the 49ers oust their power structure after the season. Florio also writes other teams might not be as quick to sign off on the former Pro Bowl performer due to the backlash that could come from fans as a result of his anthem protests.

Doubt Emerging On Rams-Chargers L.A. Deal?

San Diego citizens resoundingly disapproving Measure C on Tuesday sent a clear signal to the city’s desire for public funding to go toward a Chargers downtown stadium. Although the Chargers are currently leaning toward playing 2017 in San Diego, their long-term future seems to point toward Los Angeles.

The Chargers and Rams have agreed in principle on a deal to share a stadium in Inglewood, Calif., reaching that agreement fairly quickly after the Rams received the vote to relocate. But doubt has emerged on the teams following through on striking an official deal, Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk reports. The concern resides at the league level regarding the teams’ ability to share a market and rebuild the Los Angeles fanbase. Rumors have not tabbed Stan Kroenke as being particularly enthusiastic about sharing the coveted market.

For the Rams, that’s a more natural fit given their history as the city’s longest-tenured occupant (1946-94, 2016). The Bolts, though, played in L.A. in 1960 before quickly moving to San Diego to begin their second year of existence. A move back, from a pure fan-interest standpoint, would be puzzling, even if it’s been long-rumored. The Chargers do not possess a top-flight team, having failed to win 10 games in a season since 2009 and would be the second franchise arriving in a market that was dormant for 21 seasons. It’s difficult to see the interest spawning immediately, especially if San Diego-based Chargers fans are reluctant to support a nearby team that left the city.

Nevertheless, the Bolts’ stadium measure failing on this level — it received 43.1 percent of the vote when a two-thirds majority was required — points them out of town. But Dean Spanos potentially keeping his team in San Diego in 2017 would allow the clock to expire on the NFL’s initial agreement, which gives the Chargers until Jan. 15 of next year to move before the Raiders receive that opportunity. An extension on this agreement seems likely, but the Raiders’ complex path to Las Vegas complicates this.

If Dean stays, it’s not because he thinks he can get a stadium in San Diego,” one ownership source said, via Jason La Canfora of “It’s just because he doesn’t want to take the deal in Inglewood.”

Spanos’ franchise having suffered two stinging defeats regarding a stadium in 2016 lead owners to believe he will relocate to L.A., per La Canfora, with no stealth plan existing to make everyone happy in San Diego. Sources told the writer the Inglewood arrangement would be one Spanos is willing to live with, regardless of the team delaying a move as long as it can.

The Chargers putting a new proposal on a future ballot would give the team more of a chance to find a workable solution for the city since this one came about rather quickly. But unless a California Supreme Court decision results in the super-majority requirement being again reduced to the 50 percent threshold at which Measure C was previously set to face, the Bolts may not have a better option than joining the Rams in Los Angeles. Otherwise, it will mean continuing to play at a 49-year-old stadium they’ve long since resented.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

AFC West Notes: Chargers, Broncos, Raiders

Dean Spanos and San Diego mayor Kevin Faulconer were scheduled to meet today in Spanos’ home, Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune reports.

Acee also reports the Chargers hired Fred Maas as a special adviser to Spanos, with the new hire being brought on to help the Chargers and San Diego place a measure on the November ballot regarding public funding for a new Chargers stadium.

Spanos wanted Maas to serve as the city’s liaison for stadium negotiations in 2014. After Maas withdrew his name from consideration, the Chargers’ chairman perhaps not coincidentally, expressed doubt to sources of Acee about a Chargers stadium solution in San Diego.

Special counsel Mark Fabiani will remain a part of these talks, Acee reports.

Here’s the latest coming out of the AFC West, starting with the Super Bowl champions.

  • As father Bum Phillips would say, son Wade Phillips has finally “kicked down the door” with his Super Bowl win. The Broncos defensive coordinator helped to lead one of the league’s most fearsome defenses in 2015, but it’s a union that almost didn’t happen. Head coach Gary Kubiak‘s first choice for the job was actually Vance Joseph, formerly a Bengals assistant who recently left Cincinnati to become the Dolphins’ DC. In fact, John Clayton of hears there is a clause in Phillips’ current contract that could have made him a consultant if Joseph would have joined the team as coordinator in 2016.
  • Von Miller is expected to receive the franchise tag, and Broncos GM John Elway is confident the sides can work out an extension agreement, Arnie Stapleton of the Associated Press reports. “You never know, but we don’t want him to [leave]. We want Von to stay in Denver and we’re going to do everything we can to work it out,” Elway told media, including Stapleton. Miller, who will be 27 before next season, could command a deal potentially well north of the six-year, $101MM pact Justin Houston signed with the Chiefs last season. Houston’s negotiations became contentious at times. Super Bowl 50’s MVP told media, including Stapleton, he expects “peaceful” talks with the Broncos.
  • Although Roger Goodell told media the league was working to help Oakland and San Diego find stadium solutions to remain in their markets, league executive VP Eric Grubman told the San Jose Mercury News (via Mark Purdy) he had not met with Oakland mayor Libby Schaaf and doesn’t have plans to do so. Purdy took Goodell’s brevity regarding Oakland the commissioner does not hold the Raiders‘ current troubles in high regard. Mark Davis confirmed the Raiders are negotiating another one-year lease at Coliseum, but the Raiders are a bit behind the Chargers at this point in terms of finding a long-term solution in their city.

Zach Links contributed to this report

Chargers, City Officials To Discuss Stadium

Already, Dean Spanos and San Diego mayor Kevin Faulconer have engaged in phone conversations regarding the Chargers’ future in the city and jointly met with San Diego county supervisor Ron Roberts. But team and city officials will meet this week to discuss the stadium project that would keep the Chargers in San Diego long-term, Eric Williams of reports.

The sides will discuss stadium proposals at Mission Valley, Calif., where Qualcomm Stadium is located, and a downtown initiative, with Wil
liams pointing out the parties need to agree on a site within the next two months to put the issue on the November ballot for a crucial vote on public funding.

San Diego’s proposal for a $1.1 billion Mission Valley stadium, made public midway through last season while the Chargers were fixated on Los Angeles, includes $200MM from the NFL and $350MM from the city, among other expenses. Under Faulconer’s proposal, a public-money spending cap would be in place and force the Chargers to cover any cost overruns the project encounters.

Conversely, the Chargers would prefer a downtown site alongside the Padres’ Petco Park. JMI Reality, per Williams, laid out plans for a $1.4 billion retractable-roof stadium for the Chargers.

An obstacle obviously comes from the vote requiring public funds to be used.

The team hopes to use the citizens initiative effort, Williams writes, to bypass environmental concerns centering around the Mission Valley site and streamline this effort. This process would skirt the potential legal issues by being
exempt from the California Environmental Quality Act. Signatures of 67,000 registered voters, however, would be required by April 1 to ignite this process.

According to Williams, the Chargers assembled the same legal, land-use and financial team the organization deployed to craft a fully entitled site in Carson, Calif., last year.

Either way, the Chargers having a future in San Diego beyond 2016 will require significant development in the near future. Already agreeing to share Stan Kroenke‘s Inglewood site as leverage in these talks, the Chargers’ effort in San Diego will help determine how the Raiders proceed.

Photo courtesy USA Today Sports Images

Fallout From Chargers’ 2016 Decision

In response to Dean Spanos’ decision on Friday to keep the Chargers in San Diego for at least another season, Mayor Kevin Faulconer and Ron Roberts of the County Board of Supervisors jointly issued a statement (Twitter link via Faulconer):

“We appreciate Mr. Spanos’ commitment to staying in San Diego for the 2016 season to work with the region on a stadium solution. We look forward to discussing his vision for a new San Diego home for the Chargers, and will be working with him and our negotiating team on a fair and viable plan to put before voters. We have agreed to meet again in the near future.”

[RELATED: Chargers To Remain In San Diego For 2016]

Rams owner Stan Kroenke, whom Spanos could eventually join in Los Angeles if he’s unable to reach an agreement with San Diego, also released a statement (Twitter links – 1, 2, 3 – courtesy of the LA Daily News’ Vincent Bonsignore):

“The Los Angeles Rams have reached an agreement with the San Diego Chargers to join us in the new InglewoodDean Spanos (vertical) Stadium. If they choose to exercise their option to relocate within the next year, we look forward to partnering with the Chargers in Inglewood, but the decision of course is Dean’s to make.”

Spanos’ decision to stay or leave will obviously come down to whether he can get a new stadium built in San Diego. The Chargers would prefer their next venue be a joint stadium and convention center in downtown San Diego, reports ESPN’s Eric D. Williams, who notes that the team isn’t a fan of its current location, Mission Valley.

In an effort to move forward on their stadium/convention center plan, the Chargers are expected to create a citizens’ initiative in San Diego for a November ballot, according to Jason Cole of Bleacher Report (Twitter link). If the Chargers get the necessary 60,000 signatures from voters, that would enable them to bypass requirements set by the California Environmental Quality Act, per Cole. Should the Bolts get their initiative on the ballot this year, the deadline on their LA decision could extend to 2018, write Kevin Acee and David Garrick of the San Diego Union-Tribune, and the extra year would allow for legal challenges or a second election.

Regardless of what happens long term, we know the Chargers will spend the 2016 season in San Diego, which has seemingly caused mixed reactions among some of their players. While franchise quarterback Philip Rivers is excited – “It’s good to know we get to make another run at it here,” he said, per Michael Gehlken of the Union-Tribune – a couple of his teammates came off as less enthusiastic about the news, even tweeting ultimatums to the club’s fans.

“The stadium better be packed. The fans got what they wanted,” receiver Keenan Allen wrote.

“Every home game better be sold out,” linebacker Melvin Ingram added.

According to ESPN’s attendance numbers, the Chargers had the 18th-most fans (a total of 534,180) at their games during the 2015-16 season and finished 22nd in capacity percentage (94.6). The figures rank as the Chargers’ highest in both categories since 2009.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.