The Los Angeles Chargers are going to be playing the next few seasons at StubHub Center, which only seats 30,000 people, while they await their new, permanent home. By NFL standards, it’s tiny.
After a joint practice with the Los Angeles Rams on Saturday — the team’s first experience at StubHub Center — the Chargers couldn’t stop gushing over the venue.
“The atmosphere is amazing,” Chargers defensive end Melvin Ingram said, per Eric D. Williams of ESPN. “Everybody’s all close. It’s just a warm feeling, and I like that feeling. I love this place.”
According to the report, just about 8,000 people attended the joint practice. So the already tiny StubHub Center was less than half full, but this was by design as the practice was open to team season ticket-holders and those on the waiting list.
In other words, it was a sales pitch to a certain extent. Though, based on what the team’s players and coaches said afterwards, it won’t likely be a tough sell.
“It was an awesome environment,” Chargers head coach Anthony Lynn said. “The players loved it. I can’t wait to play here.”
“I think it’s going to be awesome,” Philip Rivers said. “There’s no bad seat in the house. Everybody’s going to have a great seat and be up close to the action. Now it’s our job to put a competitive team on the field that wins, and makes this fan base proud.”
The last part of what Rivers had to say may be the most salient. Putting a competitive team on the field that wins might prove difficult, especially if the injuries continue piling up.
After putting together what many considered to be a phenomenal draft this April, the Chargers have already lost first-round pick Mike Williams (No. 7 overall) for what could be the season with a back injury and second-round pick Forrest Lamp for the season with an ACL tear.
Still, as long as they have Rivers at quarterback and the defense can build upon what it started last year, the Chargers could certainly remain competitive throughout the season.