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Recap: Chargers Fall to Vikings, 39-10


The Chargers lost to the Minnesota Vikings, 39-10, Sunday at home.

The Vikings opened the scoring with a touchdown on the first drive, a 1-yard pass from Kirk Cousins to tight end Irv Smith Jr. After Dan Bailey missed the extra point, the Vikes led 6-0 with 9:10 left in the first quarter.

On the ensuing Bolts drive, Philip Rivers found Mike Williams twice for 58 total yards, leading to a successful 41-yard field goal by Michael Badgley.

This made the score, 6-3, with 4:40 left in the quarter.

The Chargers then forced a punt, taking over at their own 4-yard line, but Melvin Gordon fumbled on the second offensive play of the series. The Vikings recovered the fumble on the Bolts' 11, but the Chargers held them to a field-goal attempt. To begin the second quarter, Bailey converted the 26-yarder to bring the Vikings' advantage to 9-3.

The Bolts responded with a ten-play, 75-yard drive that culminated in a 2-yard touchdown lob from Rivers to Williams.

After the Badgley extra point, the Chargers led 10-9 with 8:42 to play in the half.

On third and seven on L.A.'s 26, Chargers safety Jaylen Watkins broke up a pass from Cousins to Smith in the end zone to prevent a touchdown. Bailey then converted a 44-yard field goal to give the Vikings back the lead, 12-10, with 4:22 remaining in the second quarter.

Vikings safety Harrison Smith intercepted Rivers on the Chargers' fifth play of their next series, with Minnesota taking over at the L.A. 49 with 1:58 left in the half. Smith also recorded a recovery earlier in the game on the Gordon fumble.

Four plays later, however, defensive end Melvin Ingram picked up his first interception of the season and the second of his career on a short pass, running it nine yards to the Chargers' 43.

The Bolts advanced to the Vikings' 26 before Danielle Hunter strip-sacked Rivers and Ifeadi Odenigbo picked up the ball and ran it 56 yards into the end zone. Bailey's extra point made it a 19-10 Vikings lead.

The Chargers then kneeled to bring the game to halftime.

On the first play of the second half, Gordon fumbled after catching a short pass, with Hunter recovering for the Vikings. The L.A. defense limited Minnesota to three points on the series, however, on a successful 38-yarder by Bailey. The Vikings led 22-10 with 12:41 left in the third quarter.

After the Bolts went three-and-out, Ty Long's punt was blocked, which allowed the Vikings to take over at the Chargers' 41. The Vikings advanced 32 yards on the drive, but again were limited to a field goal, this time a 27-yarder converted by Bailey. Minnesota's lead extended to 15 points at 25-10 with 7:10 to go in the third.

On fourth and two on the Vikings' 35-yard-line, Chargers head coach Anthony Lynn elected to go for it, with Rivers hitting tight end Hunter Henry for a 24-yard gain to the Minnesota 11.

On fourth and 14, the Bolts again went for it, but turned the ball over on downs this time after a pass intended for Williams fell incomplete in the end zone.

Directly after a 46-yard pass from Cousins to wide receiver Stefon Diggs, running back Mike Boone rushed up the middle for an 8-yard touchdown. Bailey's extra point handed the Vikes a 32-10 advantage with 10:25 left in the contest.

On the first play of the Chargers' drive, Henry fumbled after catching a Rivers pass, and the Vikings recovered. After the Bolts' fifth turnover of the game, it took the Vikings three plays to score again, Boone's second touchdown of the game, a 2-yard run. Minnesota now led 39-10 with 8:45 to play.

Four plays into the next Chargers series, Rivers threw his second interception of the game. The next Vikings possession ended with Minnesota's second punt of the game.

The Bolts' next possession also ended in an interception as Rivers went deep, intending his pass for Williams.

Minnesota kneeled the rest of the way to victory.

In the loss, wide receiver Keenan Allen eclipsed the 1,000-yard mark on the season, his third-straight year doing so. He led the Bolts in receiving on the day with 99 yards on nine receptions.

Rivers also reached a milestone, recording his seventh consecutive season of at least 4,000 yards passing, accumulating 307 yards passing and a touchdown while throwing three interceptions and losing a fumble.

Safety Derwin James paced the Bolts in combined tackles with nine.

For the Vikings, Cousins completed 19-of-25 passes for 207 yards, to go with a touchdown and an interception.

The Chargers fell to 5-9 and will face the 6-8 Oakland Raiders in Week 16. Kickoff will take place on December 22 at 1:05 p.m. PT from ROKiT Field at Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, California.

Browse through live action photos from Week 15 as the Bolts take on the Minnesota Vikings at home.

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