The Chargers once again found themselves on the losing side of a one-score game. It’s the fourth consecutive game in which they’ve lost by three or less points dating back to their 2022 Week 18 loss to the Broncos.
Unlike most teams who have lost four in a row, the Chargers haven’t been a floundering fish the entire time gasping for air while getting thoroughly dominated. In fact, they’ve been the dominant team for a good portion of their losses. That is, until the fourth quarter comes around.
The Chargers have continued to put up points. They’ve scored 28, 30, 34, and 24 points, respectively, in their prior four games. It’s just that they’ve allowed 31, 31, 36, and 27 points to their opponents. I recently wrote up just how bad the Chargers have been at the end of games compared to their opponents and it’s quite striking. Obviously their lack of points is what matters most in the end, but their inability to even sniff the end zone when it gets late compared to their opponents is what stands out the most.
So bringing this frustration train back around to the point of this article, the Chargers still managed to earn a decent grade for their performance in another loss. CBS Sports NFL analyst John Breech gave the Chargers a “B-” for putting up 24 points in what was a decent defensive performance outside of two huge coverage breakdowns that ended up being the difference in this game.
“This game was probably frustrating to watch for Chargers fans,” says Breech. “For one, the Chargers couldn’t seem to convert a third down. Although Justin Herbert put up impressive numbers (305 yards, two touchdowns), this team couldn’t convert on third down (2 of 14) and they couldn’t score in the red zone (They got just two touchdowns on five trips). The Chargers also were plagued by questionable decision-making with the most baffling decision coming when Brandon Staley decided to punt on a fourth-and-1 at TENNESSEE’S 44-yard line. Staley once had a reputation for being aggressive, but now, it seems like he’s having an identity crisis. The Chargers seem to figure out a new way to lose every week and this week, it was an overtime loss in a game where they blew a double-digit lead.”
With their latest loss, the Chargers also became the first team in NFL history to start a season 0-2 when scoring 50+ points and turning the ball over zero times. So while they’re winless on the year, the Chargers are now 2-0 on the season when it comes to being the first team in NFL history to lose a game in a manner never seen before.