Chargers vs. Browns: Instant reaction


The San Diego Chargers have just allowed the Cleveland Browns to take their first win of the season. Some thoughts on Saturday’s game:

Losing to the Browns

Stunned. The Chargers fall to 5-10 on the season, losing on the road against the lowly Browns. The previously 0-14 Browns now have a mark in the win column, defeating the Bolts 20-17.

Despite a monumental effort by the Chargers’ defense to create short fields and hold back the Browns, the offense could not capitalize. An embarrassment to the fan base, the team, and the front office.


You never want to say a game was lost to referee calls. The Chargers should have handled their business on the road. But some of those “calls” looked to be egregious errors.

Casey Hayward’s pass interference to extend a Cleveland drive looked like great play on the ball by two physical players. Dontrelle Inman “caught” a pass that was ruled incomplete by the refs extremely late, causing a livid Philip Rivers to go to the sidelines as the punt unit came out on fourth down. On the last drive of the game, Tyrell Williams was being hugged by the defender as he tried to come up for the pass, only to have the refs rule it fair play.

Again, it’s hard to blame the poor officiating for an entire loss, but it led to many missed opportunities for the Chargers.

San Diego Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers (17) yells at referees after a replay went against the Chargers. Mandatory Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports

Mike McCoy smiling

Down 20-17 in the fourth, Josh Lambo and the field goal unit were sent out to kick a field goal in attempt to tie the game. Jamie Meder got a hand on the ball rushing from the middle, and it was blocked. After the play, the television broadcast cut to a smiling Mike McCoy on the sideline.

Did I miss something? Is losing ever funny? What could possibly have been so funny in that situation? I can live with stoic and emotionless. But smiling? Please fire this coach. This is a joke, not a leader of a professional football team.

Defensive effort

Nine sacks. 175 total passing yards. RGIII and the Browns’ offensive line were being manhandled by this defensive front. Joey Bosa and Damion Square led the way with two sacks a piece, and six other players contributed to the other five sacks. Jatavis Brown and Denzel Perryman were a ferocious duo on the field, although the latter was taken off the field with a leg injury. This defense, barring injury, will be a force next season.

Antonio Gates

Eight catches, 94 yards and a touchdown. Gates now moves closer to tying the current NFL record for most touchdowns by a tight end. He consistently was open for receptions, including a clutch fourth-down move to get wide open, catch the ball and move the chains. He can tie the record, which is held by Tony Gonzalez, next week at home against the Chiefs.

Those are some thoughts from Saturday’s action. There is some optimism moving forward, and this loss has to indicate that McCoy will be out of a job next season.

What did you think of Saturday’s loss?