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Recap: Chargers Beat Bills 31-20 Behind Dominant First Half

The Los Angeles Chargers beat the Buffalo Bills 31-20 on Sunday at New Era Field for their first win of the 2018 season.

Running back Melvin Gordon scored three touchdowns – all in the first half – while Philip Rivers spread the ball to six different receivers and finished an efficient 23-of-27 for 256 yards and three touchdowns. The Chargers' defense was credited with five sacks. They hit rookie quarterback Josh Allen eight times and picked him off twice.

A pair of Chargers defensive rookies set the early tone for a dominant first half. On Buffalo's first possession, Allen – while trying to avoid a blitzing Derwin James – was sacked by linebacker Uchenna Nwosu. James added a tackle for loss later in the first quarter.

Check out some of the best action photos from the Bolts Week 2 match against the Buffalo Bills

Both defensive plays were key in setting up the Chargers' first two scores of the day. Wide receiver Mike Williams caught his first career touchdown – a 10-yard pass from Rivers – to give L.A. a 7-0 lead. It capped a three-play, 38-yard drive which also included a 25-yard reception by tight end Virgil Green.

On the Bolts' next offensive possession, Gordon finished a six-play, 61-yard drive with a 20-yard touchdown run. Los Angeles led 14-0 after the first quarter – and Gordon wasn't done.

After a Buffalo field goal, the Chargers marched down the field again courtesy of two Austin Ekeler rushes (22 and 16 yards) and a 23-yard reception by Green. This time, Gordon scored on a nine-yard reception from Rivers.

The hat trick for No. 28 came on a two-yard touchdown reception from Rivers with two minutes remaining in the second quarter. Los Angeles led 28-6 at halftime. Gordon finished the game with 66 total yards.

Ekeler rushed for a career-high 77 yards on 11 carries. Defensive end Melvin Ingram notched 1.5 sacks and three quarterback hits. James had six total tackles – two for loss – and a sack. Safety Adrian Phillips and rookie linebacker Kyzir White added two second-half interceptions of Allen.

Dating back to last season, Los Angeles has outscored Buffalo 85-44 in two meetings.


The Chargers travel up the road to face the Rams at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum in Week 3. Kickoff is at 1:05 p.m. Pacific on CBS.

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