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Broncos, down 14-3, rally to beat Chargers


FU Spanos and Dundon
Staff member
DENVER (AP) — Ron Dayne spent the Denver Broncos’ first game in street clothes and most of the second on the sideline.

By the end on Sunday, though, he was the key in helping Denver to the winning score — Jason Elam’s 41-yard field goal with 5 seconds left — in their come-from-behind 20-17 victory over the San Diego Chargers.

Dayne came off the bench and ran six times for 39 yards on the winning drive, including an 11-yard gain on fourth-and-1 from the Chargers 33. It was the most clutch NFL performance for the Heisman Trophy winner, who came to Denver after five disappointing seasons with the Giants.

It also saved the Broncos (1-1) from going 0-2 for the first time since 1999.

Instead, it’s San Diego (0-2) that remains winless despite leading 14-3 early and turning the sellout crowd at Invesco Field squarely against the home team.

LaDainian Tomlinson ran for both San Diego scores in the second quarter.

The first gave Tomlinson the NFL record with a rushing touchdown in 14 straight games. The second gave the Chargers a 14-3 lead and a few minutes later, the Broncos headed into halftime being showered by boos after a particularly inept half on offense.

Their rally started on the first play from scrimmage in the third quarter, when Champ Bailey stepped in front of Keenan McCardell, picked off Drew Brees’ pass and went in untouched for a 25-yard score.

Defense and special teams kept the Broncos in great field position through the quarter, but the offense struggled and Elam missed a pair of 53-yard field-goal attempts.

Midway in the fourth quarter, Broncos rookie Darrent Williams burst through untouched on a punt return for what looked like a touchdown. But the Broncos were penalized for too many men on the field, the result of a number of players running off the sideline to celebrate before Williams hit the end zone.

The Broncos staved off major embarrassment by scoring on that drive to go ahead 17-14 and the Chargers answered back with a field goal — their only decent drive of the second half — that tied the score and set things up for Dayne.

He was viewed as a longshot to make the roster, almost an afterthought in a training camp that included Maurice Clarett and Jerry Rice. And even when Dayne made the team, questions persisted when coach Mike Shanahan made him inactive for Denver’s 34-10 loss to Miami on opening day.

On Sunday, though, he was suited up and did some damage after spending most of the game watching Mike Anderson get bottled up, held to 49 yards on 15 carries.

Jake Plummer had decent stats — 23-for-37 for 248 yards — but penalties and turnovers short-circuited a number of Denver drives and the frustration built up inside of Invesco Field.

Besides Dayne, it was defense and special teams that won it for the Broncos. Denver held Brees to 175 yards, Tomlinson to 52 yards rushing and no receptions and the Chargers offense to only 41 yards of offense in the second half.


FU Spanos and Dundon
Staff member
Our offense was pathetic in the 2nd half! 41 total yards? I still believe that we can make the playoffs and win our division. Brees better get back his form of last year and LT better just get back to playing and foget this whole 2200 yards rushing.

Defense looked better. We should be 2-0 right now. Shoulda, woulda, coulda. We need to start playing Chargers football the way we know how. LT no catches in 2005. Brees already has 3 picks. Gates was a bright spot on offense.

It's time to forget about last year and all those individual goals and get a win this week against the Giants.
Hey, just stopping by to say hello. I'm new to the site, I run the Cardinals site over at NFLFSA. Looks great.

Sorry to say, but I did root for the Broncos in this one guys, but I am a Charger fan as well. My main team is the Cards, but I've followed the Broncs since Plummer left. I still think you guys have as good a chance as anyone to take the AFC West even down 0-2. Just remember, there's no possible way you could've played worse than the Cardinals have the last 2 weeks.
41 yards total offense - 2nd half?

First of all props to LT for setting the new record at 14 games with a TD. The chargers would be mediocre without him in the backfield. Even so, Cam Cameron needs to be sat down and explained to him that this is the NFL. And when you have the leagues BEST running back you need to get him the ball.

Game 1 - 19 touches
Game 2 - 19 touches

Game 1 - Catches out of the back field - 0
Game 2 - Catches out of the back field - 0

Result - 2 Chargers loses

Kansas City is 2-0 and the Broncos are now 1-1.

If the Chargers want to make the playoffs, they need to have a stronger pass protection. If you setup the running game and get more DB's on the field. then you have to establish good pass protection. Roman Oben, "...we didnt have good communication. We accept full responsibility for not protecting our quarterback." Look I know the expectations are high for this football team but you cannot put the blame on the players completely.

Coaching is terrible, and the play calling, by Cam Cameron is not meeting the needs of this football team. The offense looks so much out of sink, its almost as if they changed the whole play book after they had a lead. I mean 14-3 at the half. RUN the ball, and take time off the clock. Make the defense stop the clock, use their timeouts, how about short passes for 6-8 yards, short sidelines routes, or get Gates on a machup against a linebacker.

The one mistake that cost the Chargers huge was, Drew not looking off the DB on the pass attempt to Keenan McCardell, Champ Biley even at 50% is a pro-bowl DB. And you cannot give the defense that much of a read on a sideline pass with no one in the back field to stop the interception for a TD.

See full story here. http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/columns/story?columnist=clayton_john&id=2165762.

No team last year that started 0-2 made the playoff's. And since 1980 only 14 teams have made it.

You simply need to put the game in the hands of the best NFL running back.

By the way..also wanted to give a shot out to the Cincinnati Bengals for putting a SMACK-DOWN on the Minnesota Vikings yesterday 38-6. 5 interceptions. Deltha O'Neal is the man. See the fulll story here. http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/recap?gameId=250918004[/img]


FU Spanos and Dundon
Staff member
Welcome to the site BengalFan and Plummer16! :kegger:

LT does need to be more involved in the offense. But we have a bigger problem and that's our o-line. They played very well in the 1st half, but when we are faced with an 8 man front, we can't block anyone. The holes that LT's used to seeing is not there and Brees is not audiblizing well.

I agree that we need to get LT involved in the passing game. We threw to him only one in the Denver game and he dropped the pass. Also since Denver was blitzing so much in the 2nd half, we should have countered with a screen pass to LT.

I don't know whats up with Cam Cameron our OC. But he is just not calling a good game. LT has only touched the ball 19 times in each of the first two games with no receptions. LT is the best back in the league and you need to use him as miuch as possible.

Brees has regressed a bit too. His reads are just not there and he is at times too slow in getting the ball off. Now it's not all his fault. He is under constant pressure. So it goes back to the O-line. Fonoti is a bit banged up, but he was benched not because of injury but because of poor play.

The offensive front looks like they are missing our old line coach Hudson Houck, who left for Miami. They need to get back to their form of last year in order for our offense to click.

Anyways, it's only 2 games in. We have a tough schedule, but I think we'll bounce back starting with a victory over Eli and the Giants this week.

Keep the faith bolt fans. We are a much better team than this and could easily be 2-0. We are just hitting our slump very early this season. Don;t forget that last year, we started out 1-2. Now I don't see us going 12-4 again. But were only 2 games behind KC with 14 games left. So lets not write this team off yet. Go Chargers!!!
Once we got rollin in the first 1/2 we looked pretty good. Our D shut them down when they needed to & they pretty much abandoned the running game for awhile.

Looked like we got beat in the trenches on both sides of the ball in 2nd half. O-line gave little protection(again) & we ran no quick plays(again) to adjust to the pressure except those 2 passes to Parker late in game.
D-line was one the field to long since our O couldn't sustain a drive & by the end they were sucking thin air.

I thought for sure Elam would kick the 50yrder for the win but the 4th down run by them was a great call after the LT td we ran in the 1st 1/2. I think we might have stopped them up the middle.
Elam doesn't miss those 2 fgs and they aren't driving for a win at the end, just trying to run out the clock
9-7 No playoff's this year.

Charger Ray,

I'm sorry for giving up on the bolts this early, but the AFC west aint no cakewalk. With the additions of Larry Johnson in Kansas City, Randy Moss in Oakland, not to mention a better defensive co-odinator in Oakland and switching back to the 4-3 defense.

San Diego is going to be hard pressed to win the west now 0-2. Not only 0-2 but the best they can hopefor with the Broncos now is a season split. With a record of 9-7 and a season split with Denver, Its hard to believe they could beat either Oakland, or Kansas City right now.

And the rest of of the AFC. We know Indianapolis, New England, and Pittsburg will be in the playoffs. What about the suprise teams like Cincinnati(2-0), Cleveland(1-1), and Miami(1-1).

Not to mention how hard the rest of the schedule is? Next week: NYG, then we go to NE, home VS PITT, at OAK, then at PHILLY? Are you kidding me? These first two weeks were MUST wins for San Diego. These were when San Diego was supposed to be showing the strength of the team. Now 2 losses. One to the Dallas Cowboys who some didnt think would even make the playoff's and now to Rival Division opp. Denver. San Diego is in TROUBLE. If they cant finish against teams like Dallas, and now Denver what makes you think they have a chance against division winners? It is time to start worrying. SD must win next week. It is not time to say I hope we show up. It's time to POUND LT for 250 yards rushing, and sack the crybaby QB Eli Manning.

Make him wish he would have came to SD. Plus where is the running attack in NYG. The secondary better bring there A+ game on Sunday, beacuse if Marty has the defenseive secondary in that Cover-2 crap against NYG, then Drayton Florence and Q Jammer will get called for PI all day.

BTW, who is this new kid at Safety for the Chargers, he looks like he just came off a high school football field?


FU Spanos and Dundon
Staff member
Remember that we were not blow out in the 1st 2 games. I see us finishing at 10-6 which may be good enough to get in the playoffs. Teams in our division are not better than SD. Yes KC has improved on the defensive side and Oak has Moss, but we macthup well against those 2 teams and I wouldn't be suprised if we swept them again this year.

We are only 2 games back of KC and Oak hasn't won't yet either. So right now the AFC west is still up for grabs. This team is too good to fold early and fans should know better than to count them out. The tough schedule is just a schedule. If they approach each week like they did last year, then there is no reason why we can't win even on the road. So let's see how they buce back from these 2 tough losses. I can't think of a better way for them to let out their frustration than to annihalate Eli and the Ginats here at home on Sunday night. :D
To me LT has got to touch the ball 25 to 30 times a game,He is the best back in the league period,maybe the best player.If I am the chargers I am winning or losing with the best I have and that is LT.

IMO the chargers look so smart for tading what became Vick and drafting LT,Vick still hasnt put it together and LT is well on his way down a path to canton.