NFL Football
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Final 1 2 3 4 Tot
LA Chargers 7 3 0 0 10
Detroit 6 0 0 7 13
10:00 AM PT11:00 AM MT12:00 PM CT1:00 PM ET17:00 GMT1:00 10:00 AM MST12:00 PM EST12:00 PM CT21:00 UAE13:00 ET16:00 , September 15, 2019
Ford Field, Detroit, Michigan  Attendance: 60,158

Chargers-Lions Preview

According to STATS
According to STATS

Los Angeles Chargers at Detroit Lions

  1. These teams don't meet often, but dating back to 1981, the Chargers have won seven of the last eight meetings with the Lions. This will be the Chargers' first trip to Detroit since Week 16 of the 2011 season, a 38-10 Lions' win. Philip Rivers (28-for-53, 299, 1 TD/2 INT) and Matthew Stafford (29-for-36, 373, 3 TD/0 INT) were the quarterbacks in that 2011 meeting.
  2. The Chargers are 6-2 against the NFC since 2017, tied for the best record by any AFC team. The only two losses were to that season's NFC participant in the Super Bowl (2017 Week 4 vs. Phi, lost 26-24 & 2018 Week 3 at LA Rams, lost 35-23).
  3. The Lions' tie last week at Arizona was their first tie since Week 10 of the 1984 season vs. Philadelphia, 23-23. Detroit is 1-4-1 in its last six September games, and of course its loan win in that stretch was last September 23 vs. New England, 26-10. The Patriots would go on to win the Super Bowl last season.
  4. Philip Rivers has started 209 games in a row (this will be 210), the longest active streak in the NFL by any player at any position. Matthew Stafford's streak of 129 straight starts is tied for the fourth longest active streak by any player at any position.
  5. Austin Ekeler had 154 scrimmage yards (58 rushing, 96 receiving) and three scrimmage TD's (1 rush, 2 rec) last week versus Indianapolis. Ekeler is one of just four Chargers' running backs all-time to have 150+ scrimmage yards and 3+ scrimmage TD's in a game. The other three are LaDainian Tomlinson (9 times between 2002 and 2007), Melvin Gordon III in 2018 and Clarence Williams in 1979.
  6. T.J. Hockenson set the NFL record for most receiving yards by a tight end in his NFL debut with his 131 receiving yards. The 131 receiving yards were also the most by a Detroit tight end in any game since Charlie Sanders had 146 receiving yards vs. Green Bay in 1974.
Team Comparison

Los Angeles
30.0 Points 27.0
333.0 Pass Yds 385.0
125.0 Rush Yds 116.0
0 Takeaways 1
(AP Photo/Darryl Webb)

DETROIT (AP) The Los Angeles Chargers and Detroit Lions got off to solid starts in their openers, building double-digit leads in the second half before blowing them and going to overtime.

Los Angeles led Indianapolis by 15 points midway through the third quarter and salvaged a victory on Austin Ekeler's third touchdown with 5:01 left in the extra period.

"You won, but there's a still a feeling that we weren't at our best and that's a heavy feeling," Chargers defensive coordinator Gus Bradley said. "In some ways it could be a good thing. I think our guys will be very focused this week."

Detroit, meanwhile, failed to keep an 18-point lead in the fourth quarter at Arizona and wound up in a tie.

To make the setback sting even more for the Lions, they made an ill-timed decision with 2:47 left. With the play clock winding down, Matthew Stafford snapped the ball just after a timeout was called and completed a third-and-5 pass that would have picked up a first down and put Detroit in a favorable position to win.

Stafford appeared to scream, "trust me," on the sideline because the 11-year veteran wanted the coaches to let him manage the game.

"I'm not too worried about that," Stafford insisted days later, surrounded by reporters. "We've moved past it, probably better than you guys."

Here are some other things to watch when the Lions (0-0-1) host Los Angeles (1-0) on Sunday at Ford Field:


Despite the absence of holdout Melvin Gordon, the Chargers averaged 6 yards per carry in Week 1. Justin Jackson gained 9-plus yards each time he was handed the ball, and Ekeler had 58 yards rushing. Ekeler finished with career highs in yards receiving (96), yards from scrimmage (154) and touchdowns (three) against the Colts, giving him a relative measure of fame.

Chargers running backs coach Alfredo Roberts had a little talk with Ekeler, trying to keep him grounded.

"He said you have that cologne on," Ekeler recalled Roberts saying. "It smells good right away, but it fades. Don't drink it because it's poison."


Detroit's Damon "Snacks" Harrison, a run-stuffing defensive tackle, took the season-opening tie personally. Harrison tweeted that he was dominated at Arizona after he made only one tackle.

"Anytime we don't come out with a win and we have the type of defensive performance we had, I feel like it's on me," he said. "I got broad shoulders. I can take the blame."


Lions offensive tackle Taylor Decker is coming off a lackluster game, giving up two sacks and getting called for four penalties, and he's on the injury report this week with a back injury. The timing isn't good for the player who protects Stafford's blind side because defensive ends Melvin Ingram and Joey Bosa have combined for more than 70 career sacks.


Los Angeles won its last six road games in 2018 in the regular season, including second-half comebacks at Pittsburgh and Kansas City, and eight of nine away from home dating to the 2017 season. The Chargers also won at Baltimore in the playoffs before losing on the road to New England.

"That's why you try to keep your group together because you hope to carry that over, but you just don't know until you do it," coach Anthony Lynn said. "When we went on the road, at least last year, it was an, `Us against the world,' mentality. That's kind of what you want."


Detroit is determined to run the ball more often, and successfully, with new offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell. He's counting on running backs Kerryon Johnson and C.J. Anderson to control the game, taking pressure off Stafford and the passing game. Johnson and Anderson combined to run for 84 yards on 27 carries against the Cardinals, but may find more room to run in Week 2. The Chargers gave up 203 yards rushing, the second-highest total in Week 1, and allowed Marlon Mack to run for a career-high 174 yards for the Colts.


AP Sports Writer Joe Reedy in Los Angeles contributed to this report.


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Updated September 12, 2019

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