With the Patriots facing the Chargers this weekend, we on the Dale & Holley program have tried to miss no opportunity to crank up “San Diego Super Chargers,” one of the truly classically terrible sports anthems ever written. And it got me thinking.
You know, I really make an honest effort not to live in the past. There’s a natural circle of life that makes us all want to believe that everything in our youth was better than it is today. It’s a sort of myopia, where you look back and your mind’s eye only focuses on the good of the past and the dreck of the present. Well, I try my best not to fall into the trap. To remind myself that nothing ever really changes, and the stuff my kids are into really is no better or worse than the garbage I did.
There’s only one problem with this little mental exercise: I lived through the 1980s. And I can’t be objective about them. The ’80s were a magical, wonderful time. If you grew up during that decade, no explanation is necessary. If you didn’t, none will suffice. The ’80s were a time when anything was possible. Future archeologists will discover relics like Zubas and footage of David Hasselhoff singing at the Berlin Wall and Tony Basil’s “Hey Mickey” video and not believe such a time was possible. The 1980s will be the stuff of legend, like Atlantis.
And the crowning achievement of 1980s culture was the invention of the NFL team music video. The Chargers were ahead of their time with the “Super Chargers” song, which is really unfortunate. It came out before civilization had advanced enough to give us the music video. Because one can only imagine how spectacular that song would’ve been with Chargers greats like Dan Fouts, Kellen Winslow and Rolf Benirschke standing around a stage awkwardly lip-synching to it in ridiculous hairdos. Sadly, we’ll never know. And because there is no video, “Super Chargers” can only come in at No. 10 on the list of The Worst NFL Team Songs of the 1980s:
9. “The Super Bowl Shuffle” — 1985 Bears
The only reason this didn’t rank higher/worse on this list is they invented the genre. That doesn’t mean the whole thing wasn’t white hot garbage, just that pioneers get extra consideration.
Worst lyrics — Walter Payton:
“Well, they call me Sweetness/And I like to dance/ Runnin’ the ball is like makin’ romance.”
8. “49ers Rap” — 1988 49ers
Watching so many Hall of Famers put their hearts, souls and reputations into this excrement is heartbreaking. But it’s tempered by the fact the Niners did win back-to-back Super Bowls after this.
Worst lyrics — Doug DuBose:
“Hey, hey, man, what about me?/ I’m Doug Dubose, and I love pain, dig?/ I’ll turn a loss into a 10-yard gain/ I got a whole lotta sissies on my back/ And you can do what you want ‘cuz I ain’t goin’ down, Jack.”
7. “Buddy’s Watching You” — 1988 Eagles
Buddy Ryan’s career record coaching the Eagles: 43-35, 0-3 in the playoffs. He should’ve been watching game film instead.
Worst lyrics — Luis Zendejas:
‘I can kick field goals/Am I nervous? Yeah, I suppose/I win the game by hitting the mark/This game’s over before it starts’
6. “Silver and Black Attack” — 1986 Raiders
I almost don’t hate this one. And the moment when they start covering their ears to the hair metal guitar chords is magic. But I despise the Raiders, so they get bumped up on the list.
Worst lyrics — Matt Millen:
“Matt Millen’s my name and I’m from Penn State/ Those turkeys on offense are creatures I hate.”
5. “Locker Room Rock” — 1985 Seahawks
So you’ve got Derrie Nelson, who actually has some pipes, as a lead singer and you have him sing a cheap knockoff of “Yakkity Yak?”
Worst lyrics — Derrie Nelson:
“Step right up and line right up and give that ball a hike/ Then run it in and take a spin and give that ball a spike”
4. “We’re the New York Giants” — 1986 Giants (duh)
Seriously, how much time and effort went into making this? The lyrics are so bad it’s like they were made up on the spot. And what was the concept behind the video? “I’ve got it: We’ll go out in the stadium with a home video camera, you’ll wear just the clothes on your back, stand in a circle and mouth the words. No, no choreographing. No planning. Oh and if you want to randomly throw in a high-five no one is ready for? If you’re feelin’ it, just go for it.”
Worst lyrics — All:
“We are the New York Giants, the team that’s fast and we are rough/ Our attitude is positive but we don’t take no stuff”
3. “Can’t Touch This” — 1989 Dolphins
Kids, if you want to sum up the ’80s in one clip, this is it.
Worst lyrics — Cory of Cory and the Fins:
“Give us the ball, we’ll score/ We’re makin’ ‘em sweat, that’s why they’re sore”
2. “Ram It” — 1986 Rams
Um … you could almost take this in two ways …
Worst lyrics — Nolan Cromwell
“Hollywood handsome, Dodge City tough/ If you throw it my way, it’s gonna get rough/ I like to ram it as you can see/ Nobody likes rammin’ more than me”
1. “New England, the Patriots and We” — 1985 Patriots
Gold. Just pure gold. And this is the song that inspired the Patriots to a 46-10 loss followed by a major drug scandal that broke the following day.
Worst lyrics — John Dennis:
“Thanks for football in Jan-u-ar-y!!!”