Relocation is always a difficult process for an NFL team. It is difficult to leave behind a passionate and devoted fan base. The team’s move was initially met with skepticism, as many wondered how the Chargers would fare in a new market. However, there is one surefire way for a team to endure themselves to a new fanbase: winning.
With a strong 12-4 season this year, fan interest in the team has increased, and some of these concerns have lessened. Although the Chargers won an AFL championship in 1963, the team has only reached the Super Bowl once, losing in 1995. Led by a talented roster highlighted by potential Hall of Fame quarterback Philip Rivers, offensive stars like running back Melvin Gordon and wide receiver Keenan Allen, and a fearsome defense led by defensive end Joey Bosa and Derwin James, who was named a first team All Pro as a rookie, the Chargers look primed to take home their first Lombardi Trophy shortly.
When a team moves, it is always difficult to balance the loyalty of existing fans with the interest of new fans. Existing fans may feel offended, while new fans may not feel a connection. A team must do its best to maintain fans while simultaneously appealing to new ones. As the Chargers learned when attempting to design a new logo, this can be a difficult balance. As entailed in a past FanWide blog post, a team must ensure that they maintain some of their past identity to keep fans interested, even when trying to brand in a new area.