For starters (though there were few who actually played on the San Diego side of the ball last Thursday evening), the Bolts were manhandled last Thursday evening in the preseason finale, dropping a 41-6 decision to the visiting NFC Champion San Francisco 49'ers.
In a game that featured a number of reserves (especially on the San Diego side of the pigskin), the Bolts fell behind early, as quarterback Colin Kaepernick connected with Quinton Patton on a 43-yard reception with 11:42 remaining in the first quarter, giving San Francisco a 7-0 lead.
The Niners, who many people are favoring for a return trip to the Super Bowl this season, would take a 17-6 lead into intermission, led by a Colt McCoy TD pass (Anthony Dixon) and a Phil Dawson field goal.
San Francisco, which opens regular season action this coming Sunday versus Green Bay, tacked on a pair of second half touchdowns via third-string QB B.J. Daniels, who showed shades of Kaepernick with his running ability.
The Chargers (1-3 in the preseason), who open the regular season a week from Monday (Sept. 9) at home versus Houston, rested a number of the key players, including Philip Rivers, Ryan Mathews, Antonio Gates and Eric Weddle.
With those and others getting little or no playing time, the Bolts featured an offense that looked like a shell of itself, with Charlie Whitehurst and Brad Sorensen splitting the quarterback time. Neither lit the world on fire, with the duo combining for three interceptions (two by Sorensen).
While the bright spots for the Bolts were few and far between, one of them was the play of running back Fozzy Whittaker, who rushed for 59 yards on 10 carries.
Even though Mathews obviously is the go-to guy in the backfield, Whittaker could be a nice insurance policy come this season, especially if the Chargers can't muster a ton of production from veteran Ronnie Brown.
All said, not much could or should have been projected out of this final preseason tilt, a game typically where both teams either completely or mostly rest their key players in order to avoid injuries.
In looking at the team's final cuts when the weekend was over, was a bit surprised that Sorensen made the cut.
A season ago, the Bolts went with just Rivers and Whitehurst at the post, something that would not exactly have surprised a bunch of observers again this season,
When you looked across the field the other night, you can see that there is definitely an upside with Daniels, who made the team as the backup to Kaepernick and McCoy. Although McCoy has Daniels beaten on experience, his skill set at times leaves something to be desired, one of the reasons head coach Jim Harbaugh may have been comfortable carrying three quarterbacks this season.
With the final preseason game in the rear view mirror, the Bolts got down to the required 53-man roster by the time the weekend wound down, with the following being let go:
Tackle Nick Becton, linebacker Frank Beltre, tight end Ben Cotton, cornerback Marcus Cromartie, defensive end Logan Harrell, running back Michael Hill, cornerback Josh Johnson, linebacker Thomas Keiser, wide receiver Robert Meachem, center David Molk, tight end David Rolf, cornerback Cornelius Brown, safety Sean Cattouse, linebacker Phillip Dillard, cornerback Greg Gatson, linebacker Jerrell Harris, cornerback William Middleton, linebacker Daniel Molls, tackle Randy Richards, guard Steve Schilling, veteran tackle Max Starks, and wide receiver Luke Tasker.