The Los Angeles Chargers allowed the final 16 points, including Wil Lutz’s 28-yard field goal with one minute, five seconds to play, in a 19-17 loss to the New Orleans Saints Sunday in a preseason game at Dignity Health Sports Park.
The Chargers (0-2) scored all their points on three consecutive possessions in the second quarter. Cardale Jones threw a 24-yard touchdown pass to Andre Patton, Michael Badgley kicked a 32-yard field goal and Troymaine Pope returned a punt 81 yards for a touchdown three seconds before halftime.
New Orleans (1-1) began its comeback with Taysom Hill’s 27-yard touchdown pass to Austin Carr with 3:10 left in the third quarter, completing a five-play, 60-yard drive.
The Saints drove to the Chargers 4-yard line on their next possession, but undrafted rookie Devine Ozigbo fumbled after being hit by Chargers linebacker Denzel Perryman, with undrafted rookie safety Adarius Pickett from UCLA recovering for the Chargers at their 9-yard line.
Hill concluded an 11-play, 69-yard drive on New Orleans’ next possession with a 1-yard touchdown pass to Ozigbo, cutting the deficit to 17-16 with 6:46 remaining. Anthony Lanier sacked Hill on the two-point conversion attempt, keeping the Chargers in the lead.
The Saints drove 50 yards on eight plays to set up Lutz’s winning field goal, with Hill completing both of his passes for 24 yards and running for six additional yards.
Jacquizz Rodgers ran for 20 yards on five carries on the drive.
The Chargers attempt to regain the lead ended after four plays on the ensuing drive when rookie Easton Stick’s pass was intercepted, two plays after his 31-yard pass to Artavis Scott advanced the ball to their 44-yard line.
The Chargers were outgained, 324 yards to 304, including 248-109 in the second half, and trailed 19-16 in first downs. They led 31:34-28:26 in time of possession before a crowd announced at 23,207.
The Chargers converted four of 14 third downs, 29%; New Orleans, two of 10, 20%.
Tyrod Taylor made his second consecutive start at quarterback for the Chargers, completing seven of 10 passes for 57 yards with one interception on four series, where the Chargers picked up two first downs, punted twice and turned the ball over on downs once.
Jones completed 10 of 14 passes for 111 yards in three series.
Stick, a fifth-round draft choice from North Dakota State who is competing with Jones to be the third-string quarterback behind Philip Rivers and Taylor, completed five of 13 passes for 62 yards.
Neither Rivers, nor the Saints expected regular-season starting quarterback, Drew Brees, played Sunday.
Teddy Bridgewater made his second consecutive start at quarterback for New Orleans, completing five of 12 passes for 40 yards with one interception in five series, where it punted twice, lost a fumble and got a 33-yard field goal from Lutz, three plays after linebacker A.J. Klein intercepted a pass by Taylor at the Chargers’ 38-yard line and returned the ball 20 yards.
Hill played the remainder of the game, completing 11 of 15 passes for 136 yards and two touchdowns.
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