The San Diego Chargers improved to 4-1 with an offense that is scoring at a 30.2 points per game…
Chargers carving their own destiny?
Junior Seau intercepted a John Elway pass late in the fourth quarter to seal a 37-34 come-from-behind victory over the Broncos and end a seven-game losing streak at Mile High Stadium. This time it was Drayton Florence who intercepted a Jake Plummer pass and gave San Diego just their third win in Denver over the last 20 years. Coincidentally, those Chargers went on to open their season 7-2 before finishing 11-5 and advancing to Super Bowl XXIX in Miami. No team in NFL history had come back to win back-to-back games where they were down by 17 points or more – spanning 12,328 games – until San Diego accomplished the feat on Sunday. "We made history," cornerback Drayton Florence said. "No team has ever done that. We continue to battle back. We are riding this thing all the way to Miami." "It was a great team win," said Philip Rivers. "We knew if you get another score or two we are back in it. It is huge. It was a huge game. First place in the division." "They have a good understanding of the things necessary to do if you want to win," added head coach Marty Schottenheimer. "They have great determination." The Chargers converted all four of their red zone opportunities into touchdowns and scored on four straight possessions to end the game. "We aren't trying to be a second half team, it is just happening like that," said cornerback Quentin Jammer. "If we keep winning I guess it works." The Bolts have been inside the red zone 41 times this season and with the exception of a kneel-down at the end of the Pittsburgh game, they've scored EVERY time they've been inside the 20-yard line. The Chargers 11-play, 99-yard drive in the first quarter was the longest of the season. It eclipsed two different 91-yard drives that ended in touchdowns, one versus San Francisco and the other against Pittsburgh. "We feel like we can score on anyone," said LaDainian Tomlinson – and he should; Tomlinson has more touchdowns than 18 NFL teams. The Chargers lead the NFL in average scoring (33.2 points per game). The Chargers have scored at least 20 points in nine of their ten games this season, they've scored over 30 six times and over 40 three times. The Chargers lead the NFL in second-half (200) and fourth-quarter (122) scoring. The Chargers have won nine straight games in November and are 11-7 under the direction of head coach Marty Schottenheimer during the month. Schottenheimer is 14-13 in division since taking over the reigns. The Chargers are the only team in the league with at least 1,500 yards rushing and 2,200 yards passing. Vincent Jackson caught a 26-yard pass in the first quarter, the second longest catch in his career. Jackson had a 33-yard touchdown reception on October 15 this year against San Francisco. Jackson's five-yard touchdown reception in the fourth quarter gave him three on the year; it was also his third reception of the game – a new career-high. "We put the cornerback in a bind and we caught him in no man's land and I tried to get both feet in bounds," Jackson said of his touchdown. Shaun Phillips had a sack on the last play of the game and a forced fumble. He set new career-highs with his eighth sack of the season and fourth forced fumble. He has seven sacks and three forced fumbles last season. Ryon Bingham notched a first quarter sack, the first quarterback takedown of his career. The seventh round pick in 2004 suffered a torn biceps tendon prior to the start of the 2004 season and played in just one game in 2005 with one tackle – the only tackle of his career coming into the game. Drayton Florence intercepted Jake Plummer with three minutes to go in the fourth quarter – his second pick of the year and the seventh of his career. David Binn set a new franchise record on Sunday night, playing in the 201st game of his NFL career. Coincidentally, he also played his first-ever game in a nationally-televised Sunday night game in Denver. Binn moved past Junior Seau (1990-2002) and Russ Washington (1968-1982), who both played in 200 career games for the Chargers. Binn has missed one game due to injury in his 12-plus seasons. "It was awesome," Binn said. "That is a lot of games. I was thinking more about getting a win. It has been a long time since we won in Denver." Igor Olshansky was kicked out of the game in the final minute of the game for punching a Denver player. It resulted in a 15-yard penalty as well and gave Denver life when they had none. "I want to apologize to all the Chargers fans, the coaching staff, management, my teammates for making a stupid play at the end of the game," Olshansky said. "That could have cost us the game. It won't happen again. It was a stupid play by me." Nick Ferguson intercepted Philip Rivers on Sunday night, picking off a pass that was tipped at the line. It was the first time in 125 passes that Rivers has been intercepted. It was the fourth interception of the series for Rivers. He had not thrown a pick in three straight games coming in and it had been the longest active streak in the league. Darrent Williams intercepted him in the second half – the first second half interception he has thrown this year. It is also the first time Rivers has ever been picked off twice in the same game. The Denver defense came into the game with eight touchdown drives allowed in the last 101 opponent possessions. San Diego scored on five of their 11 drives.
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