Las Vegas Raiders hold on in 31-26 shootout win over Los Angeles Chargers
It was a shootout at SoFi Stadium that came down to the final play as the Las Vegas Raiders emerged with a 31-26 win over the Los Angeles Chargers.
With both offenses clicking led by the veteran Derek Carr and standout rookie Justin Herbert, Week 9’s matchup between the Las Vegas Raiders and the Los Angeles Chargers had the potential to be a shootout, and it’s safe to say it lived up to expectations.
After beginning with a three-and-out by both teams, Las Vegas proved to be the team to strike first. Building on the run-heavy scheme from last week, Josh Jacobs helped lead the Raiders downfield on their second drive of the game. After getting Alec Ingold and Jason Witten involved in the passing game, Devontae Booker made easy work of the Chargers’ defense with a 23-yard touchdown run to put the Raiders up 7-0.
Los Angeles was quick to answer back, as rookie quarterback Justin Herbert led the Chargers on a 13-play drive into Raiders’ territory. Los Angeles capped off the long drive with seven points as Kalen Ballage rushed for the tying five-yard touchdown early in the second quarter.
But just as the Chargers answered back, the Raiders had a response of their own. With the running game in sync, it only took six plays for Las Vegas to once again take the lead. Starting off with a 10-yard rush from Henry Ruggs, it was the Josh Jacobs show for the rest of the drive. Jacobs put the Raiders up 14-7 with a 14-yard rushing touchdown where he dived for the pylon.
The Chargers would not go out quietly, as Justin Herbert led Los Angeles on an 11-play drive to close out the half. After a hard hit by Johnathan Abram forced the Chargers to a third and long, a Mike Williams catch helped Los Angeles move the chains. A few players later and it was Abram at the expense of a well-run route by Keenan Allen, connecting with Herbert on a 27-yard touchdown catch. A costly fumble by Derek Carr with five seconds left in the half gave Los Angeles great field position to convert a field goal, giving the chargers a 17-14 lead at halftime.
Right out the gate in the second half and Las Vegas wasted no time in retaking the lead that should have been there’s at the half. Followed by a 44-yard kick return by Jalen Richard, Derek Carr went deep to one of his go-to targets in Nelson Agholor, who hauled in a 45-yard touchdown to give the Raiders a 21-17 lead.
After a Chargers three-and-out, the next offensive drive was all Derek Carr. After a highlight-worthy scramble that led to a 53-yard pass to Hunter Renfrow on this down, Carr used his legs to move the chains, literally diving to put the Raiders at the goal-line. To make sure the Raiders came away with seven points, Carr found his star tight end Darren Waller in the endzone, giving Las Vegas a 28-17 lead.
Following a Herbert touchdown and subsequent Daniel Carlson field goal, the Raiders’ lead was 31-26 until literally the last play of the fourth quarter. On third and goal, Herbert’s pass to Donald Parham Jr. was ruled incomplete after further review by the officials, sealing Las Vegas’ win and sending them to 5-3 on the season.