SAN DIEGO (CNS) - The Chargers are on the verge of the third blackout in a row of a home game after announcing Monday that 13,000 tickets are unsold for Sunday's contest against Carolina.
Teams have to sell all of their tickets by 72 hours before kickoff to have a game televised in their home markets, per National Football League policy.
Teams that are close to a sellout by the deadline are usually granted an extension. Unsold tickets in the expensive club level at 70,000-seat Qualcomm Stadium are not counted under NFL rules.
Fans interest has waned over the course of a 5-8 season that has seen the Chargers squander several fourth-quarter leads. Last week, it was reported that team president Dean Spanos has already decided to fire head coach Norv Turner and general manager A.J. Smith after the final game, though Spanos called the reports "pure speculation."
Recent home losses to Baltimore and Cincinnati were not televised in Southern California, and an early season setback to Atlanta was also blacked out. A prime time contest against Kansas City aired only because corporate backers bought up a bunch of tickets before the deadline.