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Jaguars rally to stun Chargers

Riley Patterson kicked a 36-yard field goal as time expired and the Jacksonville Jaguars recovered from a 27-point deficit to post a dramatic 31-30 victory over the visiting Los Angeles Chargers on Saturday night in an AFC wild-card contest.

Jacksonville’s Trevor Lawrence overcame four first-half interceptions to throw for 288 yards and four touchdowns to lead his team to the third-largest comeback victory in postseason history. The Buffalo Bills famously rallied from 32 down to beat the Houston Oilers in a 1992 wild-card game and the Indianapolis Colts came back from a 28-point hole to beat the Kansas City Chiefs in a 2013 wild-card game.


“You couldn’t write a crazier script,” Lawrence told NBC. “We said in the locker room, ‘This is kind of how our season’s gone.’ We’re never out of the fight. We just kept believing in each other. … Playoff game, down 27-0, we come back and win. We know we are always counted out of these games. We don’t care. We love it.”

Travis Etienne Jr. rushed for 109 yards for the fourth-seeded Jaguars. He set up Patterson’s winning kick by breaking loose for a 25-yard gain on fourth-and-1 to the Los Angeles 16-yard line.


“At that point of the game, you’re supposed to be the closer,” Etienne said of his role. “Coach believed in me on that fourth-and-1 to give me the ball and to make something happen for my teammates.”


Asante Samuel Jr. intercepted three passes and Austin Ekeler rushed for two touchdowns for the fifth-seeded Chargers. Justin Herbert passed for 273 yards and one touchdown, Gerald Everett caught six passes for 109 yards and Cameron Dicker kicked three field goals.


“We didn’t play a good second half of football as a team,” Chargers coach Brandon Staley said. “Defensively, penalties really hurt our team. … On offense, we did not sustain drives in the second half and we didn’t run the ball effectively and we missed a kick down the stretch that really hurt us.”


Christian Kirk, Evan Engram, Marvin Jones Jr. and Zay Jones caught touchdown passes for the Jaguars, who overcame five turnovers.

Jacksonville trailed 27-7 at halftime but moved closer when Lawrence threw a 6-yard touchdown pass to Marvin Jones Jr. with 5:11 left in the third quarter.


“Anytime you’re up 27-7 at halftime and have four takeaways, it is going to be a killer … this is the toughest way you can lose,” Staley said.

Dicker booted a 50-yard field to give Los Angeles a 30-14 lead with 2:58 left.

Jacksonville struck again as Lawrence connected on a 39-yard scoring pass to Zay Jones with 44 seconds remaining in the third, but the two-point pass failed to leave the Jaguars down by 10.


Jacksonville moved within 30-28 with 5:25 left when Lawrence threw a 9-yard touchdown pass to Kirk and then converted a two-point run.

Lawrence’s nightmare first half began with an interception in which two Chargers deflected the ball before it was grabbed by Drue Tranquill. Sebastian Joseph-Day batted it right after Lawrence threw it and Joey Bosa also got a hand on it before Tranquill corralled it and returned it 15 yards to the Jacksonville 18-yard line.


Two plays later, Ekeler scored on a 13-yard run just 87 seconds into the game.

Samuel recorded his first pick with 10:02 left in the quarter, setting up Dicker’s 22-yard field goal. He nabbed his second with 2:02 left and the Chargers took over at the Jacksonville 16 and Ekeler scored on a 6-yard run three plays later to make it 17-0.


The Chargers stretched their lead to 24 when Herbert tossed a 9-yard touchdown pass to Everett with 7:12 left in the half. Dicker’s 23-yard field goal made it 27-0 with 4:25 remaining.

Jacksonville got on the board on Lawrence’s 9-yard pass to Engram with 24 seconds left in the half.

–Field Level Media



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