The Chargers require help from other teams if they are going to advance to the playoffs on Sunday and they got a little help from a fortuitous bounce on a fumble as well.
Running back Melvin Gordon got stripped of the ball at the end of a 14-yard run, but the ball wound up being scooped up by wide receiver Keenan Allen. Allen then ran 26 yards into the Oakland end zone for a touchdown that put the Chargers up 7-0 in the second quarter.
It was Gordon’s first fumble of the season and the good luck on the recovery makes it one that no one will be thinking about all offseason.
The score capped off a 99-yard drive that also got a big boost from a pass interference penalty on Raiders cornerback Antonio Hamilton. The lead was short-lived, however. Derek Carr hit Amari Cooper for an 87-yard touchdown that is the longest play of the year for the Raiders.
The blow to the Chargers’ Wild Card hopes came after coach Anthony Lynn accepted a penalty against the Raiders on a failed third down conversion and that decision will be scrutinized should the Chargers wind up falling short on Sunday.