Chargers’ missed fourth-down conversions difference in Thursday night’s overtime loss to Chiefs

Given how many times the Chargers gambled on fourth down during Thursday night’s thrilling 34-28 overtime loss to the Chiefs, it would have been appropriate to have the game in Las Vegas as opposed to Los Angeles. 

The Chargers went for it on fourth down five times on Thursday night. But they were only able to convert on two of those attempts, as Los Angeles bypassed three field goal attempts before the Chiefs won the game in overtime on Patrick Mahomes’ 34-yard touchdown pass to Travis Kelce. With the win, Kansas City took a two-game lead over the Chargers in the AFC West division race. Conversely, the Chargers lost ground on the Chiefs while also losing some of their footing in the race to clinch a berth in the AFC playoffs with three games remaining.

When asked following the game about his aggressive approach, Chargers coach Brandon Staley said “the quickest way to win a game like that is to score touchdowns not field goals, especially considering who’s on the other side.”  

Here’s a rundown of each of the Chargers’ fourth-down conversations:

13:33 left in the first quarter: Tight end Donald Parham fell on his head while trying to catch Justin Herbert’s pass in the end zone. Parham was carted off the field and was in stable condition while undergoing tests for a head injury at UCLA Harbor Medical Center. 

6:18 left in the second quarter: Herbert picks up the first down on a two-yard run on fourth-and-1 on the Chiefs’ 33-yard line. The Chargers scored on the drive to take a 14-10 halftime lead. 

0:02 left in the second quarter: On the final play of the half, Herbert’s pass on the Kansas City 1-yard line was batted down at the line of scrimmage by safety Daniel Sorensen, keeping the Chargers’ lead at 14-10 at intermission. 

7:48 left in the third quarter: Herbert failed to connect with Jared Cook, as his pass was broken up by linebacker Nick Bolton on fourth-and-2 on the…

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