--Philip Rivers cemented his status as one of the NFL's best fourth-quarter QBs by directing his second last-minute comeback of the season. Rivers was especially impressive on the game's final drive, completing 6-of-9 passes for 80 yards and the winning score.
Rivers elevated his fourth-quarter passer rating to 94.7. Amazingly, if that number holds up for the rest of the season, 2009 would only be his third-best season in terms of fourth-quarter efficiency. He posted fourth-quarter passer ratings of 107.3 in 2008 and 113.2 as a first-year starter in 2006.
--Vincent Jackson caught two more touchdowns against the Giants, including the winner with 21 seconds remaining, as he continues to push to his first Pro Bowl. It was Jackson's first multi-score game of the season and the second of his career; the first came against the Seattle Seahawks in 2006 when Jackson's second TD was another game-winner with less than 40 seconds to play.
DL Ogemdi Nwagbuo
--Shawne Merriman sacked Eli Manning twice on Sunday and now has four sacks in the last two weeks. Fellow sackmaster Shaun Phillips is keeping pace with "Lights Out," as Phillips has five sacks in the last three games.
The entire defense combined for five sacks in each of the last three games. In addition to the nine sacks by the outside linebackers, three have come from the defensive line (Jacques Cesaire, Alfonso Boone and Luis Castillo) and three have come from the secondary (two by Steve Gregory and one by Eric Weddle).
What Didn't Work
--RB LaDainian Tomlinson ran just 12 times for 22 yards (1.8 ypc). It was the first time Tomlinson has been held under 2 yards per carry since a Week 13 defeat last season against the Atlanta Falcons.
In six starts this season, Tomlinson has yet to reach even 75 yards rushing. That marks the first time in his career he's gone six consecutive starts without hitting that number. His previous long slump came in 2004, when he failed to hit the 75-yard mark in five straight games (Weeks 5-9); the Chargers went 4-1 during that five-game slump.
TE Antonio Gates
Gates redeemed himself Sunday with two grabs on the last drive (9 and 10 yards). He finished with five receptions for 67 yards and now has at least five catches in seven of eight games this season. Gates has 590 receiving yards at the season's halfway point, putting him on pace for a career-high 1,180 receiving yards.
--The defense must do a better job of getting off the field in third-and-long situations. On New York's first drive of the second quarter, the Giants converted third downs of 6, 18 and 10 yards before capping off the drive with a 6-yard touchdown pass to Kevin Boss on a third-and-5.
The Chargers return to Qualcomm Stadium for their second straight game against an NFC East opponent, this time taking on a Philadelphia Eagles team that sports a record identical to San Diego's. These teams haven't met since 2004, when the Eagles held off a late San Diego rally to steal a 20-17 win in Philadelphia.
The NFC East is the division to watch next week, as the Washington Redskins will host the Denver Broncos. Denver has lost two in a row to allow the Chargers to climb within one game in the AFC West. Although the Redskins are just 2-6, Denver faces the challenge of preparing for an early game on the East Coast on a short week's rest.
Elsewhere in the AFC West, the Oakland Raiders will host the Kansas City Chiefs in a battle of divisional bottom-feeders.
What are your thoughts on the the AFC West? Talk about it in the message boards.
Michael Lombardo is a member of the Pro Football Writers of America and a long-time contributor to the Scout.com network. His analysis has been published by the NFL Network, Fox Sports and MySpace Sports. He has followed the Chargers for more than 15 years and covered the team since 2003. You can see more of his updates by following him on twitter.