The Chargers blew a 24-3 lead in a season-opening loss to the Chiefs, but they showed they learned a little something about protecting an edge over the last seven days.
San Diego raced out to a 21-0 lead in the first half and then added to it in the second half on their way to a 38-14 rout of the Jaguars. Philip Rivers was 17-of-24 for 220 yards and four touchdowns, Melvin Gordon ran for 102 yards and a touchdown and Travis Benjamin caught six passes for 115 yards and a touchdown to pace the team’s offense.
The news wasn’t all good as the Chargers lost running back Danny Woodhead to a knee injury early in the game, but they didn’t let that take the wind out of their sails the way that losing wide receiver Keenan Allen did a week ago. The Chargers took their hand off the throttle following Allen’s injury, but they kept pushing this week and the results make it clear that it’s better to go that route than step back and admire work early in the game.
On the other side, the lesson for the Jaguars is likely that coming close against the Packers wasn’t a sign that the team was ready to break through. It was a dismal performance across the board. You can see what the Chargers offense did and Blake Bortles turned the ball over three times in the first half of the game.
The loss drops Gus Bradley’s record with the Jags to 12-38 and continues a trend of sluggish starts to seasons, something that Bradley really can’t afford if he’d like to keep his job status from being a major topic of conversation.
That would have been true of Mike McCoy had the Chargers blown this lead, but he’ll get a reprieve from such talk this week while turning his attention to next week’s trip to Indianapolis.