Chargers defeat Colts with ease to secure their first playoff berth since 2018

Chargers defeat Colts with ease to secure their first playoff berth since 2018

Updated on December 27, 2022 23:35 PM by Michael Davis

The chargers defeat the Colts with ease to secure their first playoff berth since 2018.

Los Angeles Chargers security Derwin James Jr. was pumping his fist and jumping around in a Santa hat as head coach Brandon Staley presented the game ball to owner Dean Spanos and put his arm around him.

I've been trying to give him a game ball since I got here, Staley shouted.

He's been understanding. He's invested in this team. Dean Spanos, who prevailed and advanced to the playoffs, has brought us all together.

Spanos, Staley, and the Bolts had many reasons to rejoice after thrashing the defeated Indianapolis Colts 20-3 on Monday night at Lucas Oil Field.

With a win against the visiting Tennessee Titans on December 18, the Chargers improved to the No. 6 seed and had a clear road to the postseason heading into Week 16. However, thanks to the weekend losses of the New York Jets, New England Patriots, and Las Vegas Raiders, L.A.'s postseason berth arrived earlier than most had anticipated.

I've been here long enough to know that when it comes, it's a fantastic feeling, Keenan Allen, a 10-year Chargers veteran, said as his teammates bumped music and danced. "Our conversations frequently center on the idea of controlling what you can. And this past week, we had the power to direct and bring about our own destiny."

Sebastian Joseph-Day, a Super Bowl champion with the Rams last year, said: "It's incredible and beyond words. But it's not over yet. We need to keep this going since we still have two games left."

This will be Staley and Herbert's first postseason game; on Monday night, Herbert, a third-year quarterback, completed 24 of 31 passes for 235 yards and an interception.

It will be great fun, Herbert predicted. I'm really thrilled to be there, to have the chance, and to keep playing football.

(Image Credits: Lee Daily)

"It's only the start. This is not our ultimate objective, "added Staley, whose first season as a head coach saw the Bolts miss the playoffs by a single game after losing to the Raiders in Week 18 — a game in which a tie or victory would have qualified them for the postseason. Our goal is to win the Super Bowl, so we need to play our best football in the remaining two games against incredibly good opposition. Getting into the playoffs is just the beginning.

Herbert played through the ailment for a number of weeks despite suffering from a high ankle sprain and a hamstring strain in Weeks 2 and 3, respectively. In addition, wide receivers Allen and Mike Williams missed time with injuries. Allen and Williams didn't play a whole game together until Week 14. After Week 3, the offensive line also put left tackle Rashawn Slater on injured reserve.

The Bolts' defense suffered as a result of Jackson, Johnson, and edge rusher Joey Bosa being placed on injured reserve. Bosa might yet return, but aside from that, the team is settling in.

"So many people have contributed to this, and that's the great part," said Joseph-Day after praising rookie kicker Cameron Dicker and return specialist DeAndre Carter for his recent game-winning field goals. I believe that's where a lot of the progress actually comes from because a lot of guys really stood up.

Indianapolis' quarterback was sacked seven times by the Chargers, who also held Nick Foles to 17 of 29 passing for 143 yards and three interceptions. The Colts failed to convert on third down ten times.

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"We have the makeup to deal with the kind of season we've had. I firmly feel that without the perseverance, makeup, and other elements of our football squad, we would not be where we are right now "Staley added. "There has been much too much debate about this football team's and the organization's talent, but in the end, it is not what gets you where you want to go. You have to show that you're tough, and that's what our football team has done so far this season: we've proven that we're both physically and mentally capable of being where we are right now."

On Sunday, the Chargers host the Los Angeles Rams, and to finish the regular season, they host the Denver Broncos in Week 18.

Herbert seemed adamant that there is still a lot of opportunity for improvement after earning his first-ever postseason appearance.

I don't think we've played our best football yet, Herbert said.

I believe the defense has played excellently over the past few weeks. I think we can increase our offensive effectiveness. I'll be the first to say that turnovers can be decreased.

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