INGLEWOOD—In a matchup of two teams fighting for the post season, Justin Herbert had a record setting night, as he bested Dolphins Quarterback Tua Tagovailoa 23-17 on Sunday, December 11 at SoFi Stadium.
Both teams are fighting for one highly coveted Wild Card spots, as the Kansas City Chiefs are in the driver’s seat for the AFC West. The Dolphins will not catch the Buffalo Bills. The Chargers are 7-6 and if the playoffs started today, the Chargers would secure the final AFC Wild Card spot.
Heading into this game, the conversation lingered between quarterbacks Herbert and his 2020 NFL Draft classmate Tagovailoa. Tua was taken by the Dolphins with the 5th overall pick, one spot ahead of Herbert who was drafted by the Bolts.
Herbert was vastly superior to Tua, being the best player on the field. Finishing the game 39 for 51 with 367 passing yards and a touchdown pass. Justin set an NFL record with the most passing yards through his first three years in the NFL with 13,056 yards.
Tagovailoa had a disappointing performance, but a lionshare of credit must go to the Chargers unrelenting and depleted defense. He finished with 145 passing yards while completing a meager 10 of 28 passes. The Dolphins were swept by California going back to last week’s embarrassing loss to the San Francisco 49ers at Levi’s Stadium.
The Dolphins have a record of (8-5) and a difficult stretch over the final four weeks of the regular season.
The Chargers fans were wild and passionate at SoFi with energy and spirit motivated the Chargers to a must win victory.
Mike Williams returned to the field after missing four games, his 10-yard tippy toe catch in the back of the end zone made it a 10-0 lead, 116 receiving yards on the night.
The Chargers held Miami to 219 yards despite not having safety Derwin James, cornerback Bryce Callahan, defensive lineman Sebastian Joeseph-Day because of injuries. The Dolphins came in with the league’s top-ranked pass offense.
Dolphins All-Pro Wide Receiver Tyreek Hill scored two touchdowns, the first on a Jeff Wilson fumble, while lineman were playing king of the hill for the loose ball. Somehow it popped out of the pile landing in Hill’s arms, who galloped 57-yards for a TD.
Up 20-14 in the fourth quarter, the Chargers chewed up 8:39 of clock on an extended 17-play drive. A Cameron Dicker 29-yard field goal sealed the deal for a Chargers victory.
The Chargers face the Tennessee Titans on Sunday, December 18 at SoFi Stadium, kickoff is 1:25 p.m.