Los Angeles Chargers hang tough, but fall to Patriots in Foxborough
By Travis Wakeman
The Los Angeles Chargers’ winning streak is over. The streak ended at three games when the team fell short against the New England Patriots, 21-13, on Sunday.
The Chargers jumped out to a 7-0 lead when Melvin Gordon ripped off an 87-yard touchdown run in the first quarter. It certainly seemed as though they could pull the upset as the Patriots came out a bit stagnant.
That all changed in the second frame, a quarter in which the Patriots scored 15 points.
After a touchdown pass from Tom Brady to Rob Gronkowski tied the game, the Chargers went three-and-out before forcing a punt. On that return, Travis Benjamin made a boneheaded play, fielding the punt and reversing field all the way back toward his own end zone. The Patriots were able to tackle him in the end zone for a safety.
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The Pats would take on two field goals before the half to take a 15-7 lead to the break.
The Chargers had their chances, but they went 3-for-10 on third downs while allowing the Patriots to convert nine times on third down. That allowed the Pats to possess the ball for nearly 30 minutes, keeping Philip Rivers and his offense on the sideline.
Despite scoring 13 points, the Chargers never actually entered the red zone.
Nick Novak missed a 51-yard field goal attempt on the team’s first drive. Aside from Gordon’s run, the team’s other score came on a 24-yard pass from Rivers to Benjamin. Down 18-13, the Bolts elected to go for a two-point conversion, but failed.
After the teams traded punts, the Patriots went on an important 11-play drive that culminated in a Stephen Gostkowski field goal. Left with just 1:08 and no time outs, Rivers led his team all the way down to the Patriots’ 23-yard line. With one second to play in the game, the Chargers had one more shot to the end zone, but Rivers had his pass intercepted.
Though it was a loss, the Chargers should still be able to draw something positive out of hanging with the defending champs in their home stadium.
The Chargers now head into their bye week with a 3-5 record before returning to the field November 12 to battle the Jacksonville Jaguars on the road.