Chargers say goodbye to playoffs in loss

With Jacksonville and Pittsburgh winning their respective games, the Chargers also needed to come through with a victory to keep their playoff chances alive. But the offense looked stale and the defense had a tough time stopping the run in a 20-7 loss, effectively ending their hopes for the playoffs.

A wet field made for tough cutting lanes on Sunday but it did not affect Larry Johnson who surpassed the 100—yard rushing mark for the eighth straight game, becoming the first player to rush for 100-plus yards against San Diego this year and first in 17 games.

A 44-yard punt return by Dante Hall set up the first score of the game. Larry Johnson did the rest with runs of 21 and 11 yards setting up his four-yard touchdown scamper to give the Chiefs a 7-0 lead.

The Chargers came back on the next drive to tie the game. Drew Brees threw one pass to Antonio Gates while he was triple-teamed but he still came down with the 22-yard reception to begin the drive and Gates got behind the linebackers to end the drive with an 18-yard touchdown reception.

It didn't take long for the Chiefs to regain the lead. Facing third and 12, Trent Green stepped up in the pocket and delivered a 42-yard strike to Samie Parker for a touchdown.

Forty-two was the magic number for Kansas City on the next drive, as Johnson was the recipient of a catch and broke tackles by Drayton Florence, Jamar Fletcher and other members of the secondary to put the Chiefs up by 13 – the extra point attempt missed. It marked the eighth time this year that the Chiefs have scored in the last two minutes of a half.

A running into the kicker penalty on Sammy Davis gave the Chiefs a first down with 24 seconds left on the clock before halftime and the ball just past midfield. It led to a 52-yard field goal attempt from Lawrence Tynes, which fell short.

There was no scoring in the second half and the closest the Chargers came was on the first drive of the second half by San Diego.

A 20-yard run by LaDainian Tomlinson opened up the second half for San Diego, his longest run of the day. With the Bolts driving inside the Chiefs 30, Brees floated a ball that was intended for Tomlinson but it off the hands of Tomlinson and was picked off by Patrick Surtain at the 16.

SD Super Chargers Top Stories