LOS ANGELES—The Chargers lost to the Cardinals in their first preseason game on Saturday, August 11.
Los Angeles started the game with a quick three and out. This led to a large punt return by Kirk on Arizona. David Johnson proceeded to gash the Chargers’ defense to set up a touchdown run by Running Back Chase Edmonds.
When the Chargers got the ball back, Melvin Gordon helped move the offense into field goal range with his rushing and receiving. Caleb Sturgis capped the drive with a 45-yard field goal, making the score 7-3.
After forcing the Cardinals to go three and out, the Chargers had the momentum. Backup Austin Ekeler (RB) started the drive with a 20 yard run on the left side of the field. Next, backup Quarterback Cradle Jones found Mike Williams for a solid gain. On a drive that looked like it could provide some points, the Chargers left with none. At the Arizona 29-yard line, Jones fumbled a snap that was recovered by the Cardinals.
Neither team would score on their following possessions, and the teams entered halftime with a score of 7-3.
At the start of the second half, Jeremy Cash returned a Chargers fumble 12 yards for a touchdown. This made the score 14-3. On the ensuing Chargers drive, backup Quarterback Geno Smith threw an interception on a tipped pass. At this point it seemed the game may get out of hand for Los Angeles. However, they forced Arizona to go three and out.
Late in the third quarter, Smith started to find a rhythm. He connected on passes of 13 and 18 yards before finding Geremy Davis on a 49-yard bomb down the left sideline. This touchdown made it a four-point game.
On the following Cardinals drive, backup Quarterback Mike Glennon was intercepted on a diving catch by Brandon Facyson. Smith once again led the team down the field and Detrez Newsmen (RB) punctuated the drive with a touchdown run to give the Chargers a 17-14 lead.
Both teams punted on their following possessions, but when the Cardinals received the ball, they put themselves ahead for good. Backup Chad Kanoff threw a 14-yard pass to Bryce Williams to make the score 21-17. The Cardinals would hold on to win 24-17.
Although the Chargers did not come away with a win, they put together a more impressive performance than their crosstown rivals, the Rams. Despite the absence of Philip Rivers, Geno Smith looked like a solid backup.
Geno Smith finished with 14/23 for 218 yards with a touchdown and an interception. Jeremy Davis finished with 88 yards and 1 touchdown on 4 receptions. Josh Rosen, the first round pick from UCLA, finished 6/13 for 41 yards. He entered the game after Sam Bradford started on the opening drive.