Non-Playoff NFL Team Seasons in Review | Los Angeles Chargers

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The Los Angeles Chargers became the “Atlanta Falcons 2.0” with their uncanny ability to lose games in the ways they did. On a more positive note, Justin Herbert easily outperformed expectations in his rookie season. The rest of the Chargers (besides Joey Bosa) all were let downs throughout the year.

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Credit: Jason Behnken/AP Photo

Los Angeles Chargers Start Season Off Right

The Los Angeles Chargers started their season in Cincinnati to take on the Bengals. Joe Burrow would take on Justin Her… wait the Chargers started Tyrod Taylor? That’s right, Anthony Lynn is a thief of joy. This game came down to the kickers as Burrow and Joshua Kelley each had a rushing score. Randy Bullock missed a game-tying field goal try wide right, and the Chargers got the win 16-13.

Chargers Transition to New Stadium and Quarterback

The Los Angeles Chargers next played their first home game at SoFi Stadium. The defending champion Kansas City Chiefs came in for a house warming party. Justin Herbert’s first career NFL start was made on an emergency whim after Taylor had an issue receiving a cortisone shot before the game. The rookie balled out in his debut with 311 yards passing and a TD. However, it wasn’t enough as the Chiefs came back from down 11 to win 23-20 in OT.

The Chargers would then play the Carolina Panthers at home in week three. The Panthers were without Christian McCaffrey and could not get the run game going. The Chargers only allowed 302 yards of offense, but the L.A. offense turned the ball over too much in a 21-16 loss.

Road Trip Down South Gone Wrong

Herbert and the Los Angeles Chargers went across the country to take on another NFC South team in the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The Bolts came out strong and built a 24-7 lead in the first half. Little did people know that the Chargers would get outscored 31-7 the rest of the game to take the loss, 38-31.

Then it was on to yet another NFC South opponent, this time under the bright lights of Monday Night Football. Herbert came out ready to play against the New Orleans Saints as he would throw for four touchdowns. The game would go to overtime after Taysom Hill found the endzone with under a minute left in regulation to tie it. In OT, Wil Lutz eventually gave the Saints the win, 30-27. The loss sent the Los Angeles Chargers into their bye week with a 1-4 record.

Chargers Suffer Brutal Setback at Mile High

Coming out of the bye, the Los Angeles Chargers tried to end their four-game skid when they faced the Jacksonville Jaguars. Justin Herbert had another great day through the air with 347 yards and three touchdowns. He would also be the team’s leading rusher with 66 yards and another score. The Chargers put up 17 unanswered points to get the win, 39-29.

The Chargers’ next game against the Denver Broncos turned into one to forget. The Los Angeles had a 24-3 lead halfway through the third quarter. The Broncos eventually made it a one-score game. With seconds remaining, Drew Lock dropped back and found K.J. Hamler for the tie and Brandon McManus would kick the extra point for the win. The Chargers blew a 21 point lead in the 31-30 loss. Yikes!

The Chargers tried to right the wrong the following week against the Las Vegas Raiders . Herbert again had a great game with 326 yards and two TDs. And yet again, the team wasted this performance as the Raiders prevailed, 31-26.

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Credit: Darren Yamashita/USA TODAY Sports

Los Angeles Chargers Rack Up Air Miles Against AFC East Opponents

The Los Angeles Chargers then traveled back to Florida to take on the the Miami Dolphins . In a battle of rookie quarterbacks, it was Herbert vs Tua Tagovailoa. The stat lines between the two were about the same, but the Dolphins got the win in the end, 29-21.

A home date against the New York Jets was next on the schedule. The Chargers got out to a 24-6 half time lead. Justin Herbert led the way with 366 yards and 3 TDs. Most of them went in the direction of Kenan Allen as he reeled in 16 receptions for 145 yards and a score. That would be enough to push L.A. to a 34-28 shootout win.

The Chargers then went all the way back across the country to Buffalo for a game against the Bills. Los Angeles stopped Josh Allen and the Bills’ offense for most of the day with Herbert doubling his counterpart up in yards. Nonetheless, the Bolts still found a way to lose yet another tightly contested affair.

The finale of the Los Angeles Chargers’ four-game stretch against the AFC East saw the New England Patriots come into SoFi Stadium and dominate. The Patriots were superior in every facet of the game on their way to a 45-0 shutout win. The Chargers were officially eliminated from playoff contention that loss.

Chargers Pick Up Wins Down the Stretch

In Week 14 every internet sports jokester got the matchup they wanted. The Atlanta Falcons and Los Angeles Chargers faced off to see which team would not throw the game away. Neither team truly got out to a big lead. The Chargers did get a late interception to set up a game-winning Michael Badgley field goal for the 20-17 win.

The Los Angeles Chargers next played the Raiders again, but this time on Thursday Night. The Chargers had two chances to win late in the fourth quarter, but Michael Badgley missed both kicks. The game ultimately went to overtime. After the Raiders kicked a field goal to take the lead, the Chargers got the ball for their shot. Herbert led them down the field and took it in himself on a sneak for the 30-27 win.

The Bolts followed this up with a 19-16 victory over the Denver Broncos the following week before ending their season with a matchup against the Kansas City Chiefs. The Los Angeles Chargers had an advantage in this game given that the Chiefs were resting several starters ahead of the playoffs. Herbert had another great game of 300 yards and three touchdown passes. He also added another rushing TD on route to the 38-21 win.

Los Angeles Chargers Offseason Begins with Firing of Anthony Lynn

Usually, when teams are eliminated from the playoffs, they lose to help their draft stock. The Chargers did anything but down the stretch of the 2020 season. With Anthony Lynn now gone , the Chargers are looking forward to next year. They have the 13th pick in the NFL Draft and should look to bolster a weak defense or suspect offensive line.

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