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Bolts Defense Playing at Best Level in Years

Six, 10 and six.

Those are the points the Los Angeles Chargers defense has given up in their last three games against the Dallas Cowboys, Cleveland Browns and Washington Redskins.


That's the total number of yards the team held the Redskins to, which is the fewest they've given up since 2014 vs. the New York Jets.


The number interceptions in they've totaled in last five games, not to mention the fact they've had at least one pick in eight of their last nine games.


The total number of points surrendered over the past four games, leading the team to outscore their opponents 131-53 over the winning streak.

Any way you slice it, the Chargers defense is playing at their best level in a number of years.

It's been due to a total team effort.

From established superstars Joey Bosa, Casey Hayward and Melvin Ingram to solid vets Jahleel Addae, Denzel Perryman and Corey Liuget to up-and-coming youngsters like Darius Philon, Desmond King and Trevor Williams, every member of the defense has played a vital role.

"I think defensively, we have really started to become comfortable with this defense," said Kyle Emanuel, who had a crucial interception in the first quarter.  "I think it took a little bit, but we are playing well.  It's fun to be a part of and fun to watch and see how different guys go out there, play well and come away with some wins."

Head Coach Anthony Lynn credits the unit's camaraderie as playing an important part over the dominant stretch.

"No doubt," he said.  "Everything they do, they do it together. They play for one another. One guy is happy as hell for another guy scoring a touchdown (on defense). There's no jealousy on this team. It's really a brotherhood. It's neat to see."

Kirk Cousins was the latest quarterback to be frustrated by the team's smothering defense. While he mentioned he needed to go back and watch the film, he rattled off a litany of ways the Bolts frustrated the Redskins' offense all afternoon.

"At first glance, when you don't convert third downs consistently, it is hard to score points," he said. "Secondly, which goes along with not converting third downs, when you don't have explosive plays, big games, 20-plus yard gains. Then, you are forced to constantly convert third downs and eventually your luck is going to run out. You are not going to hit one. It is hard to hit eight or nine in a row down the field. We didn't have explosive plays, the third-down conversions, and a turnover that lead to third points. All those things happen."

"Coming off a week from playing a rookie quarterback to a great quarterback like Cousins, we had to make sure we focused on our technique and game plan," King explained.  "We knew that he likes to buy more time out of the pocket and extend the plays, so we had to stay on our guys."

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