(East Los Angeles, CA) [From The Editor’s Desk]: The weather was warm and blanketed the City of L.A., the City of Champions, Inglewood, and Southern California with a beautiful, bright sunny day. A high of 82 degrees showed on all smart-devices and thermometers. Just an outstanding and good football climate for the NFL’s Week #10.
In matching with all of this great Fall weather, the Chargers took on the Detroit Lions, with their #16/QB Jared Goff off to a terrific start this season, while leading the his team to a very respectable and winning (6-2) overall record and an NFC North (4-1) record.
The Chargers, were (4-4) and in 2nd place behind the Division leader, Kansas City Chiefs. Except for the major injury to wide receiver, Michael Williams, the Bolts appeared to be rounding into better player health with the first half of the season behind them, and they were highly determined to bring home another win, and boost their overall record to a winning (5-4) for their loyal fans in attendance.
[1st Qtr]: The Lions won the “coin toss” and deferred to receive the kick-off to start the second half. The Chargers began at their own 25 and quickly went “3 & out.” The Lions cut loose from the moment #16 QB, Jared Goff connected with their explosive wide receiver and former USC Trojan/Mater Dei All-American, in Amon-Ra St. Brown, on a 46 yard bomb, putting the ball on the Chargers 12. However, on 2nd down, a personal foul penalty against the Lions cost them a 9 yard TD pass to #9 WR, Jameson Williams thus killing the drive and moving backwards into field goal attempt territory. Then at the (10:09) mark, Lions Head Coach, Dan Campbell, sent in his Kicker, #36 Riley Patterson to chalk up 3 points with a 33 yard field goal.
[Photo Gallery Courtesy]: Los Angeles Chargers
On the Bolts second possession, after going with their “run-pass-option” (RPO) game, that involved #30 Austin Ekeler and WR #13 Keenan Allen, they managed a scoring drive of 8 plays, for 45 yards, and used up (3:15) minutes. Coach Staley then called on his Kicker, #11 Cameron Dicker, to tie the game at 3 apiece with (7:30) left in the 1st period.
Then at the (4:18) mark, Detroit scored after a quick 75 yard drive on a 1 yard run by #26 Jahmyr Gibbs, making it (10-3), Lions. Gibbs made his score possible by a great open-field run down to the 2 yard line. The Chargers took the “kick-off” and unfortunately, on 2nd down, Herbert threw an interception at the sideline, with credit given to #31 Kerby Joseph. This turned the ball back over to the Lions at the Bolts 33 yard line.
[2nd Qtr]: The Lions and Goff continued their drive but the Chargers put up a tremendous goal line stand and on 4th & 1, Goff threw an incomplete pass turning the ball over on downs to the Bolts at their 2 yard line. Then, the Chargers went “3 & out” and punted from their own 11 yard line.
The Lions, starting from the Bolts 40 used another good mixture of runs and passes to his main targets, marched down to the Chargers 1 yard line, and eventually put up the Lions’ second score, this time on a Gibbs short TD run at the (7:34) mark, making the score Lions 17, Chargers 3.
The Bolts answered with their scoring drive at the (3:27) mark, due to timely Herbert completions to #30 Auston Ekeler and #13 Keenan Allen. From the Lions 29 yard line, Herbert dropped back and found Allen open for a 29 yard TD reception, cutting the margin to (17-10).
However, on the ensuing kick-off, something went extremely awry on the Bolts Special teams as they were stunned on a 1st down call by Lions Head Coach, Dan Campbell, as he called a running play for RB/#5 David Montgomery, who hit his hole perfectly, got good blocks on the Chargers secondary and then “out-ran” his pursuers into the end zone for an electrifying 75 yard rushing touchdown.
After the play, there was a call by the Replay Official to review the long run to determine if Montgomery may have inadvertently stepped out of bounds on the 5 yard line. But upon further review, the ruling on the field stood, much to the loud approval of the substantial number of Lions fans in attendance. This moved the score up to (24-10) and it came with (3:21) left in the half.
The Chargers had plenty of time to mount a counter-attack drive before the period ended and Herbert went to work by completing a long 28 yard pass to Allen down to the Lions 11 yard line. On their next play, a short pass took it to the 3, followed by an Ekeler run to push it into the end zone for a 3 yard rushing TD. The score was now Lions 24, Chargers 17.
[HALFTIME SCORE]: Lions 24 Chargers 17
[3rd Qtr]: The Lions received the kick-off but had no success in moving the ball and went “3 & out.” The Chargers would then start their longest drive of the game from their own 8 yard line as Herbert racked up four first downs on the way to a 10 play score that consumed (4:30) minutes of clock. The Bolts tied the score at (8:01) on a perfectly executed 18 yard TD pass to wide receiver, #15 Jalen Guyton from Herbert.
Four minutes later at (4:34) the Lions roared with a great combination of runs by Montgomery to passes intended for Goff’s talented receivers and finally he took the lead back when he connected with #14 St. Brown for a 20 yard scoring pass, making it (31-24) Lions.
[4th Qtr]: The Chargers went back to work and managed a scoring drive of 75 yds, on 7 plays, that took (4:00) minutes of clock. They scored on a 4th & 1 call by Coach Brandon Staley and it went from Herbert to #1 Quentin Johnston for the credit, tying the score at (31-31) with (11:33) left in the game. Herbert mixed the drive up calling for runs by Ekeler and catches by #12 Derius Davis and Johnston. Detroit answered back, with their 25 yard TD pass when Goff found his tight end, #89 Brock Wright, wide open for the 6 points. The PAT was good for a (38-31) lead.
But the Bolts were not done yet in this crowed-pleasing and high scoring affair. On their next possession, Herbert painted a picture of positive yardage runs by Ekeler and passes to Guyton and Johnston, only to set it up for a nicely called 38 yard TD pass to #13 Allen who sprinted his way into the end zone for the tying score at (38-38). This came with (3:42) remaining in the contest.
As usual, the team with possession of the ball in the ultimate phase of the game, primarily at the (2:00) minute mark, many times will win, and at this time it belonged squarely to Detroit. A couple of short set-up passes to St. Brown and tight end, #87 Sam Laporta, moved the ball down to the Bolts 20 yard line for a 1st & 10. This gave Goff the opportunity to take three straight knees to the field to line things up for his Kicker, Patterson to attempt a game ending 41 yard field goal. The ball was snapped with just (00:02) left and he split the upright perfectly for the winning score.
[FINAL SCORE]: Detroit Lions 41 L.A. Chargers 38
[NEXT]: Chargers go on the road to Green Bay to play the Packers on Sunday, 11/19. Kick-off is set for 10:00 am and can be seen on FOX. They return home on Sunday, 11/26 to host the Baltimore Ravens at 5:20 pm. Fans can watch it on NBC.