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Chargers D Comes Up Big on Third Down

Posted Sep 29, 2013

On 3rd down plays, the Chargers defense came up big

All week long the Chargers hammered home the fact they needed to get off the field on third down.

For the most part, they did just that as the Dallas Cowboys converted just three of nine attempts for 33%.

“That’s what it’s all about,” said Eric Weddle.  “Third down is putting our best against their best. We went with the matchups, and when you’re in position and the defense is relying on you to make plays, that’s what you have to do.  That’s what we have to do week in and week out.”

Not just that, but the stops ended up leading to big plays for the Bolts.

Derek Cox came up with a big one on Dallas’ second possession of the game, punching the ball away from Dez Bryant on a 3rd-and-2.  Giving the ball back to the offense, the Chargers scored on the very next drive on Danny Woodhead’s 26-yard touchdown catch for the first points of the game.

In the second quarter, Tony Romo looked to hit Jason Witten over the middle, but Weddle broke up the pass.  As a result, the Cowboys had to settle for a 56-yard field goal attempt that went wide left. Six plays later, Nick Novak hit his first field goal of the game to give the Chargers a 10-7 lead.

In the fourth quarter, Weddle came up big again.  On 3rd-and-8, Romo once again looked for Witten.  It was Déjà vu as number 32 knocked it away, forcing yet another punt.  Six plays after that, Philip Rivers hit Antonio Gates for the backbreaking 56-yard touchdown and a 30-21 lead.

“Obviously it’s a big win to come down to us,” Weddle said. “For the defense we just wanted to come down and play tight coverage and get a stop by any means necessary and win the game.  And that’s what we did.”

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