The San Diego Chargers had a chance to tie their game against the Oakland Raiders on Sunday afternoon. All they had to deal was get off a clean snap on a field goal with two minutes left and hope that Josh Lambo could drill a kick from 36 yards out.
The snap was accurate, but the team’s holder, punter Drew Kaser, couldn’t get a grip on the ball, and San Diego lost to their in-state foes, 34-31. It was an impressive way for the Chargers to lose another football game, as San Diego has lost four times this year by a total of 14 points. In order:
- San Diego lost to Kansas City in overtime, 33-27, after having a 27-10 lead with fewer than 10 minutes left in the game.
- Two weeks later, the Chargers were up by two on the Colts when Andrew Luck threw a 63-yard pass to T.Y. Hilton with 1:17 left in the game to win, 26-22.
- The following week, San Diego was up on New Orleans, 34-21, before the Saints scored 14 points in the final five minutes to win, 35-34.
And now, there was this loss to the Raiders. Oakland deserves a ton of credit, as it has been really good this year (the Raiders are 4-1 and have shown that they’re not afraid to go against conventional wisdom in an attempt to win, which rules), but this was such a gut punch for a Chargers squad that needed a win.
Maybe the Chargers’ luck will change and they’ll eventually end up winning a few close games this year, but for now, San Diego is earning a reputation of being a team that struggles to win when the score is close.