The Los Angeles Chargers came up short in the fourth quarter in a 19-17 loss to the Miami Dolphins in their regular season debut at StubHub Center.
On 4th and 5, Dolphins kicker Cody Parkey nailed a 54-yard field goal that gave them the lead.
This is the first regular season home game for the Chargers in Los Angeles since 1960.
After 56 years of playing in San Diego at Qualcomm Stadium, owner Dean Spaonos decided to move his franchise to L.A. after last season. Spanos struck a deal with Los Angeles Rams owner Stan Kroenke to play in his Inglewood stadium, scheduled to be ready in 2020. For the next three years the Chargers will play at the nearly 30,000 seat Stub Hub Center in Carson.
The Chargers defense played very well throughout the game, setting the tone, however the offense continued to struggle and didn't assist themselves with several penalties that killed them on their first two drives of the opening quarter.
The Chargers returned home after a close loss to the Denver Broncos 24-21 last Monday night at Mile High Stadium. The Chargers were determined to bounce back after a good week of practice, ready to face the Miami Dolphins.
Miami had not played a regular season game due to the conditions of Hurricane Irma, and flew out to Los Angeles early to practice.
The Dolphins showed no signs of rust as head coach Adam Gase decided to keep their offense simple with QB Jay Cutler, as RB Jay Ajayi did most of the heavy lifting on the ground. The Bolts defense stood up masterfully, preventing a touchdown opportunity and allowing Miami to settle for a 30-yard field goal, and a 3-0 lead.
Later in the second quarter the Bolts offense woke up, and with solid runs by Brenden Oliver and two key catches by Keenan Allen that landed them in the red zone, Gordon bulldozed his way through to score the team's first touchdown of the day for the 10-3 lead.
Adam Gase challenged a crucial play in the third quarter, and won the decision. The Dolphins kept their drive alive, as Cutler avoided pressure and found Kenny Stills on the right side of the end zone for a 29-yard touchdown reception.
Rivers continued to pick apart the Dolphins' defense as he found Henry and Allen driving down the field.
No target was more significant than finding Gates in end zone for the touchdown and the all-time record. Gates surpasses Tony Gonzalez on the All-Time list for most touchdown receptions for a tight end. It was the 85th time that Rivers connected with Gates for a touchdown, tying Steve Young and Jerry Rice for second-most in NFL history.
The Chargers had one last opportunity for victory. With just over a minute remaining, Rivers marched the Chargers down the field. With just 19 seconds left, Koo missed the game-winning field goal. The Chargers have now lost two straight and now must get ready for their AFC West rival in the Kansas City Chiefs next Sunday.
*Gates' caught his 900th career reception pass in the second quarter. He's only the 22nd play in league history to reach 900 receptions.