The Los Angeles Chargers improve to 6-9 on the season after a 19-16 win over the Denver Broncos.
The Broncos won the toss and elected to defer. Chargers safety Nasir Adderley returned the opening kickoff 53 yards to Denver's 39-yard line. Two weeks ago against Atlanta, Adderley had a 76-yard kickoff return.
After a 14-yard reception from Justin Herbert to tight end Stephen Anderson, Los Angeles' drive stalled. Michael Badgley's 37-yard field goal gave the Chargers an early 3-0 lead.
Denver's first possession went 14 plays for 71 yards, taking up 7:45 of the clock. On third-and-6 from the Chargers' 16-yard line, Broncos quarterback Drew Lock threw to the end zone looking for wide receiver DaeSean Hamilton, but the pass was intercepted by cornerback Casey Hayward, his first of the season.
Denver got down to the LAC 24 early in the second quarter. Brandon McManus came on to try a field goal attempt on fourth down, and while he missed, an offsides call on the Chargers moved it closer by five yards. McManus missed again, to keep it 3-0, Chargers.
On the ensuing drive, Herbert found Austin Ekeler for a nine-yard touchdown and 10-0 lead. That passing score gave Herbert 28 on the season which broke the record for the most passing touchdowns by a rookie in a single season in NFL history.
The team increased their lead by three off a 43-yard field goal later in the first half to make it 13-0, Chargers.
The Broncos will get the ball to start the second half.
Denver and Los Angeles traded punts to start the second half.
On their second possession, the Broncos put together an eight-play, 41-yard drive capped by a 30-yard Brandon McManus field goal to get on the board.
The Chargers answered with a drive that included a 26-yard reception by Donald Parham Jr. and a 23-yard reception by Stephen Anderson, plus a 10-yard rush by Herbert on a fourth-and-8. Los Angeles has the ball at Denver's 2 to start the fourth quarter.
Badgley kicked the Bolts to a 16-3 lead early in the fourth quarter, but then the Broncos scored on their next three possessions.
They cut into the Chargers' lead after a 50-yard field goal made it 16-6 with 11:18 remaining in the game. Then, they got the game within three, 16-13, after Lock kept it for a one-yard score.
With 2:47 to go, McManus came on to attempt a 52-yard field goal and made it to tie the game, 16-16.
The Bolts got the ball back and got into Denver territory thanks to gains of 23 apiece courtesy of a catch from Jalen Guyton and a rush from Ekeler. After Herbert was sacked on third down, Badgley came on and made a 37-yard field goal to make it 19-16 in favor of the home team with :41 seconds left.
Denver had a final opportunity and faced a 4th-and-10 from their own 25. They converted. But with one second left, Lock dropped back for the Hail Mary, but Mike Williams picked it off to seal the team's win.