LA Chargers News

Chargers chewed by toothless Lions: The Good, the bad, and the ugh

By Dennis J. Hassell
DETROIT, MI - SEPTEMBER 15: Philip Rivers #17 of the Los Angeles Chargers reacts prior to the start of the game against the Detroit Lions at Ford Field on September 15, 2019 in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Rey Del Rio/Getty Images)
DETROIT, MI - SEPTEMBER 15: Philip Rivers #17 of the Los Angeles Chargers reacts prior to the start of the game against the Detroit Lions at Ford Field on September 15, 2019 in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Rey Del Rio/Getty Images)
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The Los Angeles Chargers snatched defeat from the jaws of victory. This article simply tallies up the comedy of errors.

Each and every Charger needs to have a time out in his bedroom, and think about what he did.

In their first game of this season, the Bolts, playing the Indianapolis Colts, only won by luck. In this Motown muff, they richly deserved to whiff instead of win. As quarterback Philip Rivers observed, the Chargers were asking for it.

In the National Football League, very few teams can afford to donate a win to a weak opponent and still win their division. The Chargers are not one of those teams.

The toothless Detroit Lions gummed the Chargers into submission, as the Bolts fumbled, stumbled and bumbled away a precious “W”.

The Chargers gave away a very, very winnable game. The Lions largely were kitty cats, yet the Chargers still couldn’t get out of their own way.

The bad

Nothing was bad. Everything was worse than bad. It was ugly. The Lions were inept, so how bad were the losers? A long string of brain cramps created a perfect storm of errors, — but that hot mess pales compared to…

More from Bolt Beat

The ugh

  1. Substitute kicker Ty Long leaves six points on the field.
  2. NINE penalties call back two touchdown runs and a turnover.
  3. A lost fumble on a first down at the goal line negates an imminent touchdown (on the same drive as two other canceled TD plays!)
  4. Rivers lofts a ball into double coverage instead of making a first down. This was not last-second desperation, this was inexcusable.
  5. Chargers lost the turnover ratio for the second consecutive game. Zero sacks, too.
  6. Another safety, Adrian Phillips went down with a forearm injury.

The good

  1. The run defense stiffened, keeping the Lions to under 100 yards.
  2. The offensive line improved — perhaps the start of a trend? Secondary got two picks (though its ranks got thinner.)
  3. Keenan Allen. The Slayer slew Slay – until Rivers played frisbee golf with the Lions’ Pro Bowl Cornerback Darius Slay.
  4. Mike Williams. Two incredible drive-saving catches.
  5. The next game is against the struggling Houston Texans, another very winnable game, however with these Chargers, this game is also very lose-able.

The Big Picture

Last season, the Chargers lost against Denver when they should have won, and that face-plant was enough to miss winning the division and all the playoff advantages that would bring.

This year, only two games in, the Chargers have already given up the margin of error. A lot of better teams are coming at them. Much better teams than the Lions.

If the Chargers choke on another such opportunity, a “Sell” order is coming from the fans: the Bolts may make the playoffs, but don’t expect them to make it through the Wild Card gauntlet all the way to the Super Bowl.

It is predicted here that against Houston next week, the real 2019 Chargers will show up, setting the tone of the season, for better or worse.  Will they play like Champions? Or Chumpions?

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