The Los Angeles Chargers just keep finding new ways to lose football games.
It is why fans of the team have long said things like “only the Chargers” and “that’s a new way to Charger it”. Sunday was a new chapter in that as the Chargers lost their eighth game of the season. All eight losses have been decided by seven points or less.
It has been a shocking freefall for a team that went to the divisional round of the playoffs last year and was expected to do be a serious contender this year. Now, the Chargers are likely to have a top 10 pick in the draft.
The Denver Broncos got off to a hot start in this one with rookie Drew Lock making his first career start. He threw two early touchdowns to Courtland Sutton and the Broncos got up 14-0. However, the Chargers battled back and tied the game 17-17 and then again at 20-20 following a 46-yard field goal from Michael Badgley with just seconds left in the game.
But with eight seconds to go, Lock, instead of taking a knee and settling for overtime, took a shot down the field and Sutton was interfered with by Casey Hayward. It ended up being a 37-yard penalty, moving the Broncos into field-goal range with just three seconds on the clock.
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Brandon McManus came out and banged home a 53-yard field goal as time expired, sending the Chargers to 4-8 on the season and almost certainly on the outside looking in at the playoffs.
Philip Rivers rebounded from a rough start that included a terrible interception and finished the game 20-of-29 passing for 265 yards and two touchdowns. Melvin Gordon ran for 99 yards and Mike Williams had a big day with five catches for 117 yards, including an insane catch on a 4th-and-11 play to set up the game-tying field goal.
The Chargers go on the road next Sunday to face the Jacksonville Jaguars in a battle of 4-8 teams.