The Chargers won their eighth game in a row on Sunday. It's the team's longest streak in a single season since 1987. The most consecutive games the team has won in a single season is 11, a feat accomplished in 1961. That year, the team finished 12-2 before losing to Houston in the AFL Championship Game.
The Bolts are 7-0 this season when leading after the first quarter and 9-0 when scoring first.
Tomlinson's second touchdown of the day was the 58th touchdown of his career, raising his career scoring total to 348 points. Tomlinson tied Gary Garrison for second place on the team's all-time touchdowns list and fifth-place on the team's all-time scoring list.
His 16 touchdowns are tied for the league lead with Shaun Alexander. He is three shy of the team record of 19 touchdowns held by Chuck Muncie with two games to play.
Tomlinson rushed for 111 yards on 26 carries on Sunday, his sixth 100-yard game of the season and fourth in the last five weeks. With one 100-yard outings in the final two games, Tomlinson will tie the team record of seven 100-yard games in a season that he shares with Don Woods (1974). L.T. reached the mark in 2002.Tomlinson is the team's all-time leader with 23 career 100-yard games. The team is 15-8 all-time when he surpasses the 100-yard barrier.
"He is a good runner and in the first half, he was able to do some things well, and make some good runs," Browns' linebacker Warrick Holdman said. "They had some good plays called for the defense we had out there. We made some adjustments and kind of slowed them down in the second half, but by then, we were too late and the damage had already been done."
The Chargers rushed the ball 50 times on the day, their most rushing attempts since September 12, 1983 when they had 51 in a game versus Kansas City. The record is 58 attempts, accomplished back in 1977 against the Raiders.
"The coaches did a great job in preparation," he said. "We saw some dents in the defense and took advantage of man-to-man coverage. Fortunately, we ran the right play and came up with a touchdown."
"Just a miscommunication, a blown assignment," Browns' defensive back Lewis Sanders said.
Gates also has his sights set on the overall team record of 14 touchdown catches in a season, which is shared by wide receivers Tony Martin (1996) and Lance Alworth (1965). Gates' 12 touchdown catches are tied for third-most in the NFL behind Philadelphia's Terrell Owens (14) and Indianapolis' Marvin Harrison (13).
"High school," Drew Brees said when asked when the last time he threw so few passes. "I was 7 for 7 in a high school game, and that was the fewest number of passes I have thrown until today."
During one stretch of the game, the Chargers ran the ball 19 consecutive times before throwing a pass to Antonio Gates with two minutes to go in the third quarter. Gates was called for pass interference on the play but the penalty was declined. The last pass they attempted was the touchdown to Gates in the second quarter, a span of 15 minutes and 27 seconds. That was the last pass the Chargers threw on the day.
"Donnie once again made an outstanding play for us," head coach Marty Schottenheimer said.
His interception on Sunday led to a scoring drive and a seven point lead early in the game. It also prevented the Browns from scoring any points, at least a ten point swing in the game. Edwards had another chance at an interception in the fourth quarter but Jerry Wilson knocked the jump ball out of his hands with no one else in the area. Edwards ended the day with seven tackles.
Kiel showed courage and resiliency last season as a rookie when he beat the odds and made a complete recovery after being shot three times during an attempted carjacking in Houston. Despite being shot over the Fourth of July weekend, Kiel made the opening day roster and finished the 2003 season with 59 tackles and two interceptions. This year, Kiel has started every game at strong safety and is the team's second-leading tackler with 84 stops.
Denis Savage can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org