The Los Angeles Chargers used a classic connection on Christmas Eve to deliver their eighth win of the 2017 season.
Tight end Antonio Gates caught six passes for 81 yards -- including his 87th touchdown reception from quarterback Philip Rivers -- to help lead the Chargers over the New York Jets 14-7 Sunday at MetLife Stadium.
Running back Melvin Gordon had 128 total yards and a touchdown. Gordon also surpassed 1,000 rushing yards for the first time in his NFL career. Rivers finished 22-of-40 for 290 yards and a touchdown.
After a scoreless first quarter that included three Los Angeles punts, the Chargers opened the second with their tried-and-true duo. Rivers found Gates for a 27-yard reception, the future Hall of Famer's longest catch of the season. Four plays later, the two connected in the end zone for a three-yard touchdown to give the Bolts a 7-0 lead after new kicker Nick Rose made the extra point.
Rose missed a 47-yard field goal on the Chargers' opening possession of the second half. Three plays later, Jets running back Bilal Powell rushed 57 yards for a touchdown. A Chandler Catanzaro extra point made the score 7-7.
Los Angeles responded with an eight-play, 75-yard drive, capped off by a one-yard touchdown rush by Gordon. The Chargers led 14-7 after the third quarter, the eventual final score.
The Chargers forced three turnovers and held Jets quarterback Bryce Petty to 119 yards passing. Los Angeles was also turnover-free Sunday after commiting four turnovers last Saturday in Kansas City.
Chargers rookie defensive end Isaac Rochell earned the first sack of his career. Rivers passed John Elway for eighth-most completions in league history (4,124).
The Chargers close the regular season on Sunday, Dec. 31st against the Oakland Raiders at StubHub Center. Kickoff is at 1:25 p.m. Pacific on CBS.
The Chargers battle the New York Jets for a Christmas Eve matchup.