Bolts Report Card: Week 12

So much for starting that three-game homestand with a bang. The Chargers dropped another heartbreaking game and missed a golden opportunity to gain ground in the AFC West. Here's a look at how each unit graded out.

PASSING OFFENSE: B-minus -- Philip Rivers was solid but again had a critical turnover that cost the Chargers seven points. Chris Chambers had his best game since returning from an ankle injury, and Malcom Floyd made two big catches. But TE Antonio Gates was hardly in the mix. He had only two receptions even though there were many opportunities to look his way in the red zone. Pass-blocking was leaky on the play when Rivers fumbled the ball. The Chargers allowed two sacks.

RUSHING OFFENSE: C -- LaDainian Tomlinson isn't being silent about the Chargers' need to run the ball more. But this remains a pass-first offense, and the running game struggled finding a rhythm. That said, the team rushed for 120 yards. The lack of a reliable fullback continues to haunt the Chargers; now rookie Jacob Hester takes over the role once held by Pro Bowler Lorenzo Neal.

LB Stephen Cooper
Harry How/Getty

PASS DEFENSE: C -- ILB Stephen Cooper got burned on a quick slant for a touchdown. Peyton Manning threw for another one when Antonio Cromartie and Antoine Cason said they were picked on the play. The pass rush wasn't enough to pester Manning much -- one sack and just two quarterback hits. Quentin Jammer blames contact with the ref in giving up the key pass that set up the game-winning field goal.

RUSH DEFENSE: B -- Jamal Williams was a monster in the middle, and the rest of the run defense fed off him. Joseph Addai did rush for 70 yards, averaging 4.4 yards on 16 carries. He gashed the Chargers on a 23-yard run. OLB Shaun Phillips had some key tackles.

SPECIAL TEAMS: B -- Nate Kaeding hit a clutch 47-yard field goal to tie the game with 90 seconds left -- too much time to leave for Manning. Kaeding also had a 35-yarder. The coverage units were fine, and the return games featured a 26-yard kickoff return by Darren Sproles.

COACHING: F -- Not Norv Turner's finest moment. His decision-making down the stretch was odd when he elected to go for a field goal after burning a timeout when he didn't have to. Before the half, the offense took over at the Chargers 27-yard line with 34 seconds remaining and two timeouts. Turner at first sat on the ball then changed his mind after a few gains. Why not push it from the start when trying to match the Colts offense? The defense continues to improve under Ron Rivera, but it still couldn't make the last stop to win the game for the fourth time this season.

BoltsReport Top Stories