The Lightning Rod: Gordon, Chargers dominate Packerscsudhbulletin November 6, 2019 0 COMMENTS
By Jeremy Gonzalez, Sports Editor
The Los Angeles Chargers (4-5) managed to put together their best game of the year, and it could not have come at a better time as their season looked lost.
The Chargers, led by Melvin Gordon and his two touchdowns, dominated one of the league’s top teams, the Green Bay Packers (7-2), at home by a score of 26-11 on Sunday.
The Chargers defense held Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers to one of his worst outings this season. Green Bay came in as the second-best team in the NFC but it had its four-game winning streak snapped while falling to a 7-2 record.
For the first time this year, the Chargers looked like the team that went 12-4 and qualified for the postseason last year. The offense saw a change in play-calling as Shane Steichen was promoted from quarterbacks coach to offensive coordinator. In his first game, the offense was balanced throughout the game and moved the ball consistently.
Steichen called a fantastic game for the Chargers offense as they held the ball for nearly 36 minutes and averaged 6.5 yards per play. Los Angeles only punted the ball once and did not have a three-and-out on any of its nine possessions.
The Chargers rushing attack, which had been held to under 40 yards in four straight games, exploded for a season-high 159 yards. Gordon had 80 yards on 20 carries and Austin Ekeler added another 70 yards on 12 carries.
Phillip Rivers threw for 294 yards while completing 21 of his 28 passes and receiver Mike Williams had his first 100-yard game for the Chargers with three receptions for 111 yards against the Packers.
Kicker Michael Badgley returned to the team after being out for the first eight games with a groin injury and looked healthy in his return, kicking four field goals and two extra points in his first game back.
The defense kept Rodgers and the Packers offense out of the end zone until midway through the third quarter. They pressured Rodgers all day and sacked him three times. Defensive ends Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram had one and a half sacks each. Rodgers finished the game with 161 yards.
Packers running back Aaron Jones came in averaging 137.8 scrimmage yards in the team’s last four games but was held to just 29 yards. Receiver Devante Adams returned for the Packers after missing for games because of turf toe, but was held to 41 yards by the Chargers defense.
Packers: Green Bay will host Christian McCaffrey and the Carolina Panthers (5-3) in Week 10. The Panthers are coming off a 30-20 victory over the Tennessee Titans at home where McCaffrey continued to dominate and scored three touchdowns. The Packers are 4-1 at home this season, making next week’s matchup of potential NFC playoff teams must-watch television.
Chargers: Los Angeles will travel to the Bay Area on a short week as they face their division rivals, the Oakland Raiders (4-4), on primetime Thursday Night football. Oakland defeated the Detroit Lions 31-24 on a goal line stand where the Lions ran three plays inside the Raiders 5-yard ling and were unable to convert a touchdown. Thursday’s game could have strong implications on the AFC playoff race as both teams are fighting for a wild card berth.