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Chargers can't hold back Texans' second-half scoring surge in loss

Jeff Miller, Los Angeles Times on

Published in Football

Coming off a frustrating loss in Detroit, the Chargers found even more frustration at home, losing Sunday to Houston 27-20.

En route to the defeat, they blew a 10-point halftime lead, lost a touchdown on a penalty call and had an interception wiped out by offsetting penalties.

They also failed repeatedly to stop the Texans on third down (Houston finished six for 10) and couldn't corral quarterback Deshaun Watson, who escaped several near-sacks to extend plays and torment the Chargers.

Houston scored the first 20 points of the second half -- on a Carlos Hyde three-yard run and on 15- and 53-yard Watson passes to Jordan Akins.

The Chargers' final possession died on downs in the last minute. Travis Benjamin failed to hold onto a potential touchdown pass on that possession and left tackle Trent Scott was called for a holding penalty to wipe out a completion that would have moved the ball inside the Texans' 10-yard line.

Hoping to atone for the ugly defeat in Detroit, the Chargers' first possession ended after three plays netted four uninspired yards.

 

But then they got a break on Houston's third play from scrimmage when Watson, in an apparent attempt to throw the ball away, spiked it backward, making it a lateral and a live ball.

Desmond King grabbed it for the Chargers and returned it 13 yards to the Texans' 15-yard line.

Three plays later, Philip Rivers hit Keenan Allen for a seven-yard touchdown pass to put the Chargers up 7-0.

They stretched the lead to 10-0 when a 15-play, 72-yard drive resulted in a Ty Long 34-yard field goal.

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