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Dominant first half carries the Los Angeles Chargers past the Las Vegas Raiders

Oct 4, 2021; Inglewood, California, USA; Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert (10) throws a pass against the Las Vegas Raiders during the first half at SoFi Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 4, 2021; Inglewood, California, USA; Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert (10) throws a pass against the Las Vegas Raiders during the first half at SoFi Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Justin Herbert passed for 222 yards and three touchdowns to help the Los Angeles Chargers notch a 28-14 victory over the Las Vegas Raiders on Monday night at Inglewood, Calif.

Austin Ekeler accounted for two touchdowns (one rushing, one receiving) and had 145 scrimmage yards (117 rushing, 28 receiving) for the Chargers. Jared Cook and Donald Parham Jr. also caught scoring passes, Herbert completed 25 of 38 passes and Derwin James had an interception for Los Angeles (3-1).

Derek Carr connected on 21 of 34 passes for 196 yards with two touchdowns and one interception for Las Vegas. Hunter Renfrow and Darren Waller caught touchdown passes for the Raiders (3-1).

The result created a three-way tie for first place in the AFC West between the Raiders, Chargers and Denver Broncos. The reigning division champion Kansas City Chiefs are last at 2-2.

The Raiders, who were averaging a league-high 471 yards of total offense entering the game, managed just 213 yards. Los Angeles gained 380 and had a 25-13 edge in first downs.

The start of the game was delayed for 35 minutes due to lightning strikes in the area.

After trailing 21-0 at halftime, the Raiders got on the board when they took the second half kickoff and drove 78 yards on 11 plays. Carr finished the drive with a 10-yard touchdown pass to Renfrow.

The next time Las Vegas possessed the ball, it navigated 81 yards on six plays. Carr hit Waller with a 3-yard touchdown pass to pull within the visitors within 21-14 with 1:44 left in the third quarter.

Daniel Carlson missed a 52-yard field-goal attempt for the Raiders with 10:38 left in the game. The Chargers capitalized and made it a 14-point margin with Ekeler scoring on an 11-yard scamper with 5:20 remaining.

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James picked off Carr with 3:14 left as Los Angeles finished the impressive victory.

The Chargers dominated the first half, racking up 248 yards and 15 first downs while limiting the Raiders to 51 yards and one first down. In fact, Las Vegas racked up more penalty yards (53) than total offense over the first 30 minutes. The Raiders also had 0 total yards in the first quarter.

The Chargers scored on the first possession of the game, driving 75 yards on 12 plays in 6:59. Herbert capped it with a 4-yard scoring pass to Parham.

Los Angeles increased its lead to 14-0 when Herbert connected on a 10-yard touchdown pass to Cook with 4:16 left in the half. Herbert hit Ekeler with a 14-yard touchdown pass with 29 seconds remaining to make it 21-0.

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–Field Level Media