clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Are the Raiders still the Chargers' biggest rivals?

New, comments

The Raiders have long been the Chargers greatest rivals, but is that still true today?

Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Historically, there is no question that the Oakland/Los Angeles/Oakland Raiders are the biggest rivals of the San Diego Chargers. From Al Davis to the Holy Roller to the 1981 AFC Championship game, the Chargers-Raiders rivalry is historic and unique.

ESPN recently asked each of their team bloggers to name the biggest rival of the franchise they cover and Eric Williams wrote:

Former San Diego center Nick Hardwick simply referred to it as "Raiders Week." "You're just there to punch the guy in front of you," Hardwick said about competing against the Chargers' longtime AFC West rival. Although the Chargers have dominated of late, winning 14 of the past 20 contests, most games have been competitive -- eight of the past 10 matchups have been decided by eight points or fewer. Last season the Raiders swept the Chargers for the first time since 2010.

Williams ultimately draws the conclusion that the Raiders remain the Chargers' biggest rivals, but he raises the suggestion that recent run of dominance by the Chargers could have that title on shaky ground. A larger point that he does not address is that the passing of Al Davis has taken away some of what made the rivalry special. Also, with the Raiders eyeing a move to Las Vegas and the Chargers possibly on their way to Los Angeles, the future of the rivalry would look much different from what we are all used to.

That said, the Chargers' recent dominance isn't that recent anymore with the teams splitting their last 12 games. The Raiders are on the rise and the Chargers are coming off one of the worst seasons in franchise history. On the field, at least, Raider Week looks to be as competitive as it ever has been.

What do you think: are the Raiders still the Chargers' biggest rivals or have they been eclipsed by the Broncos or Chiefs?