The Los Angeles Chargers improved to 4-2 on the season after beating the Cleveland Browns, 38-14.
Offense: Melvin Gordon – What can you say about Melvin Gordon that hasn't already been said this season? Well, here's something: Gordon scored three rushing touchdowns for the first time in his pro career on Sunday. He finished the game with 18 rushes for 132 yards and the three scores.
Defense: Desmond King – King had a career-high two interceptions in the win over the Browns. Both picks turned into points for the Chargers on their ensuing offensive possessions with a touchdown and field goal, respectively. Additionally, he finished with two total tackles, one quarterback hit and three passes defensed.
Unsung Hero: Adrian Phillips – With Kyzir White and Jatavis Brown inactive for the Bolts, Phillips was forced to play more linebacker, and he delivered. He quietly made big plays in the win. He had a pass breakup in the end zone at the end of the first half to force a Browns field goal two plays later. Then in third quarter, he broke up a pass intended for David Njoku.
Stat of the Game:
This was the Chargers' first game with over 240 rushing yards as a team since December 28, 2008 vs. Denver (289).
Play of the Game:
After gaining 44 yards on a reception, Tyrell Williams ran downfield and with triple coverage on the receiver, Philip Rivers lobbed a pass deep for number 16. Williams made an athletic grab and strongly held onto the ball for the 45-yard score to go up 14-3.
With just over three minutes left in the second quarter, Baker Mayfield hit Damion Ratley on second down, but the wideout was met by Michael Davis who stood him up two yards shy of the sticks. The defense buckled down at their own 23 on the next two plays, forcing incompletions on third and fourth down as the Browns turned it over on downs. The Chargers wasted no time on offense rewarding the strong defensive effort as Philip Rivers found Tyrell Williams for his second score of the game, giving L.A. a commanding 21-3 lead.
It Was Over When:
After forcing the Chargers to punt on their opening possession of the second half, the Browns offense came on field. Baker Mayfield stepped back and threw a pass in the direction of Jarvis Landry. Instead, Desmond King reached out in front of Landry to pick the ball off and return it to the CLE 10. One play later, Melvin Gordon ran it in for his second touchdown of the day to make it 28-6. The Bolts kept their foot on the gas the rest of the game to eventually win, 38-14.
"Coming across the country and playing in a hostile environment, they executed well today. That's the way it's supposed to look. It could have been even better." – Head Coach Anthony Lynn
"It's big that we know how to finish. We came up short in Buffalo, we didn't lose the Buffalo game, but we didn't finish how we wanted to. We finished today so that's good for us." – RB Melvin Gordon
"The chemistry and confidence is coming back to what it was at the end of last season, I can tell. Before the game and in the locker room, everyone is feeling good and trusting the game plan. When we can do that and not think about having to play, we can go out and do what we just did." – WR Keenan Allen
Odds and Ends
The Chargers outgained the Browns in total yardage 449-317. They had a 246-103 advantage on the ground while the Browns held a 214-203 edge through the air.
Tyrell Williams led the receiving corps in yardage (118) while Keenan Allen led the receivers in targets (six) and receptions (four).
Jahleel Addae paced the defense with nine total tackles. The defense also had five sacks with contributions from Derwin James (.5), Rayshawn Jenkins (.5), Isaac Rochell (1), Corey Liuget (1.5) and Damion Square (1.5).
Philip Rivers became only the sixth quarterback in NFL history to throw 400 completions of at least 25 yards.
Antonio Gates hauled in a five-yard pass early in the second quarter, and in the process, passed Calvin Johnson for the 29th most receiving yards in NFL history.
Desmond King served as today's honorary captain.
Inactives for the Chargers included Caleb Sturgis, Travis Benjamin, Kyzir White, Jatavis Brown, Cole Toner, Joe Barksdale and Joey Bosa.