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Chargers-Patriots final score: San Diego's lack of offense leads to 23-14 loss to New England

In one of the most important games of the year, the San Diego Chargers offense did not show up at all. Their defense was not enough to hold off the New England Patriots. The Chargers are now 8-5 and face a rough path to the playoffs.

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Todd Warshaw/Getty Images

This isn't something we say regularly, as fans of the San Diego Chargers, but Philip Rivers and the Chargers offense was pathetic tonight and it cost the team the game.

The San Diego Chargers finished with about 200 total yards of offense, which is roughly half the amount of yards the Patriots offense put up.

The Chargers offense scored just 7 points, compared to 23 points put up by New England.

Ryan Mathews nearly averaged as many yards per carry (4.0) as Philip Rivers did per pass (5.7), and he turned the ball over less.

All in all, this game reminded me too much of the 1-15 2000 San Diego Chargers. The defense was swarming, forcing two turnovers and holding one of the league's best offenses to just 6 early points before a terrible Nick Novak punt handed them a TD before the end of the first half, but they simply ran out of gas late in the game.

Not only did the Patriots win the time of possession battle 34-25, but the Patriots had the Chargers defense running all over the field and the Chargers offense grouped 3 & Outs together in the second half to make sure they didn't get any rest. Philip Rivers rarely had time to get comfortable in the pocket, and did nothing when he actually did get time.

Give credit to John Pagano for a good gameplan and the players for their effort on defense. Give Nick Novak credit for some pretty good punts after Mike Scifres went down with what appears to be a broken collarbone. The rest of the team, and the coaching staff, didn't hold up their end of the bargain.

The Chargers looked like the Jaguars or Jets going up against the New England defense, and that's not how you get into the playoffs. It's also not how you beat the Broncos, who the Chargers will meet next Sunday.

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