The Falcons continue their pursuit of a playoff berth with a 22-16 victory over the San Diego Chargers. It was not the best or prettiest performance by the team this year. Despite limiting the Chargers to only 201 total yards, three turnovers kept their opponent in the game right to the end.
Matt Ryan played well, leading the team with 207 yards passing, completing 17 of 23 passes for 2 touchdowns. Michael Turner led the team on the ground, rushing for 120 yards on 31 carries (3.9 avg). Roddy White led receivers with 6 catches for 112 yards. Justin Peelle (3 catches, 38 yards) and Harry Douglas (3 catches, 13 yards) each had a scoring strike from Ryan. Turner and Brian Finneran fumbled the ball. Finneran’s fumble was returned 86 yards for a score by Eric Weddle. And the Chargers capitalized on Turner’s fumble for another three points.
The Chargers offense had little success against the Falcons offense. Chris Houston and Keith Brooking tied for the lead among defenders with 7 stops each. John Abraham (1 tackle, 0.5 sacks), Jonathan Babineaux (2 tackles, 1.5 sacks), Kroy Biermann (2 tackles, 1 sack), Michael Boley (3 tackles), Erik Coleman (3 tackles), Chauncey Davis (2 tackles), Domonique Foxworth (3 tackles), Curtis Lofton (6 tackles), and Lawyer Milloy (5 tackles) had noteworthy games.
On special teams, Jason Elam connected on two field goals of 35 and 40 yards. Michael Koenen had 2 punts for an average of 53 yards and 1 inside the 20. Jerious Norwood returned 3 kickoffs for an average of 18 yards. Douglas returned 2 punts for a total of 32 yards, but muffed his first which led directly to points by the Chargers. Jamaal Anderson was successful on blocking a field goal.
The Falcons will travel to New Orleans next week to face division rival Saints. The Falcons beat the Saints in Week 10 with a sound 34-20 win and hope to repeat themselves next week.