San Diego Chargers at Denver Broncos 10/23/14 NFL Score, Recap, News and Notes
Final Score: Broncos 35
Week 8 got started with a bang on “Thursday Night Football” with a big-time matchup between the Chargers and the Broncos. San Diego came into this one off a narrow loss to the Chiefs, while Denver was still riding high from a historic victory over the 49ers in Week 7. Games between these two rivals are always interesting, and this one was no different.
Let’s take a close look at the key stats and important players from the game so that we can figure out why things played out the way they did. Afterward we’ll check out Week 9 so we can see what’s in store for both teams.
What Happened: Another night, another stellar outing for the Broncos offense. Peyton Manning kicked things off in the second quarter with a 2-yard TD pass to Emmanuel Sanders, who would get used to hearing his name on this evening. The Chargers responded to the score with one of their own, a 2-yard Keenan Allen TD catch from Philip Rivers. That 7-7 tie would be as close as the Chargers would get, as Sanders struck again on a 31-yard TD to make it 14-7 after one half.
In the third, Sanders was back at it, grabbing a 3-yard TD. Juwan Thompson would add a 2-yard run to extend Denver’s lead. The Chargers stopped the bleeding with a 4-yard Antonio Gates score, making it 28-14 after three quarters.
In the fourth, Thompson logged another tough-yardage TD run from one yard out to make it 35-14. Gates would add another 10-yard TD catch to bring the Chargers to within 14 at 35-21, but that’s the last time anyone would hit the scoreboard.
Denver now has a commanding lead of the division, while San Diego has now dropped two straight games.
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The Stars: It was another Manning evening, as he went for 286 yards and three touchdowns. His beneficiary tonight was Sanders, who caught all nine balls that came his way for 120 yards and the three scores. Demaryius Thomas also had another effective outing with 105 yards of his own. Ronnie Hillman made yet another case to be the No. 1 back when Montee Ball returns, logging 109 yards on 20 carries, and 29 more on three catches.
On the other side, Keenan Allen had 73 yards and the score on nine grabs, while gates put up 54 and his two touchdowns. Rivers would finish with 252 yards and three scores, but also had a pair of interceptions.
The Goats: The formula for beating Peyton Manning and the Denver offense is to keep them off the field. The Chargers didn’t do that. They logged just 61 yards rushing on 15 carries and lost the time of possession battle 30:46 to 29:14.
Defensively, they were just awful as well, generating no sacks, no turnovers and just two tackles for loss.
Injuries: Denver didn’t emerge unscathed in the injury category; LB Lamin Barrow reportedly sustained a concussion. We’ll have to monitor him over the next week to see how he’s progressing.
Outlook: Both teams are back in action for Week 9. The Chargers will be taking their talents to South Beach to face the Dolphins (November 2; 1:00 PM ET on CBS).
Meanwhile, the Broncos will head east as well. They’ll go into Gillette Stadium to take on the Patriots in what’s sure to be another memorable matchup (November 2; 4:25 PM ET on CBS).
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