The Chargers have had 20 games decided by one score since the start of the 2019 season, and they are 4-16 in those games. That is the most one-score losses in the NFL in that span.
The team’s clock management and poor decision-making have come into question.
A bright light shone on Lynn and his staff after a 27-17 meltdown against the Bills in which CBS analyst Rich Gannon pulled no punches.
It invites questions about Lynn’s job security.
“It comes with the territory,” Lynn said Monday, via Gilbert Manzano of the Southern Cal News Group. “I control what I can control and I don’t worry about that. Of course, I like my job and I want to be here and I believe that I’m the right guy for the job and can turn this around. But that’s not my decision.”
Lynn is 29-30 since taking the job in 2017, including 8-19 since the start of the 2019 season.
Lynn’s indecisiveness on a two-minute drive at the end of the first half led to 17 seconds running off the clock before he took a timeout with 21 seconds left. He then pulled his offense off the field on a fourth-down play and punted.
He could have let time run out rather than punt. He could have called timeout with three seconds left and thrown a Hail Mary.
Lynn also called a timeout before a chip-shot 27-yard field goal with 10:16 left to prevent a delay of game for what would have been a 32-yard field goal if the Chargers had taken the penalty.
That was not even the worst of it.
After Tyron Johnson caught a 55-yard Hail Mary to the Buffalo 2-yard line with 45 seconds left — the Bills should probably work on defending the Hail Mary a little more — the Chargers snapped the ball with 25 seconds left and Justin Herbert handed it to Austin Ekeler. Ekeler was stopped short as time ran down on a team trailing by 10 points.
Lynn called it “miscommunication” immediately after the game. He didn’t point fingers Monday, but it seemed clear the play call wasn’t his.
“You spike the ball or do a fake spike and throw a fade or whatever,” Lynn said. “There’s so many other things you could do, but that was screwed up and it looked bad.”
Herbert threw two incompletions — with a roughing the passer coming on the first — before he tried a quarterback sneak on the final play as his offensive linemen dropped into pass coverage. At one point in the three-play sequence, Lynn sent the field goal unit onto the field before changing his mind.
“It was embarrassing to end the game like that,” Lynn said.