One quick step and Gordon, the third-year running back for the Los Angeles Chargers, was deep into the secondary for a 21-yard gain. He drove them into field goal range, allowing rookie sensation kicker Younghoe Koo to take the field for a huge game-tying kick.
A 44-yard field goal that would have sent the game to overtime turned into a mulligan blocked by backup defensive lineman Shelby Harris, helping the Broncos outlast a furious fourth-quarter comeback against their AFC West rivals. A freaky series of decisions from the Chargers in terms of clock management allowed time to melt away (they waited for a measurement on one play then ran on third-and-1 despite having less than a minute on the clock) but a pass interference penalty got them in field goal range.
With four minutes left on the game clock, Brandon McManus - who inked a new four-year deal earlier in the day - missed a 50-yarder. "I predict that the Chargers will win the game 21- 10".
There wasn't much running to be done by the Chargers in the second half, not with Los Angeles facing a 17-point deficit at the start of the fourth quarter. Trevor Siemian returns as Denver's starting quarterback.
"He settled us down real good, and the line started picking up the blitzes and the blocks", said Allen, who finished with five catches for 35 yards and a touchdown. Denver wouldn't see third down again on that drive, which ended in a Siemian one-yard rushing touchdown.
Jimmy Butler, a Minnesota Timberwolves forward who is a close friend of Broncos wide receiver Demaryius Thomas, also attended the game and sported an orange bandana. History was also made in the booth, as Beth Mowins became the first woman in 30 years to call a regular-season National Football League game. Philip Rivers is back for a 14th season with the franchise, and his 2016 passer rating of 87.9 was his lowest since 2007.
His biggest strength is probably foreshadowed by that Northwestern education - a high football IQ, one that sets him apart from his competition and their better physical skill sets.
The margin felt bigger because the field continued to shrink on the Chargers.
A funky interception by Siemian gave the Chargers' hope, setting in motion a greasy series of events. Credit to safety Adrian Phillips and linebacker Korey Toomer on forcing those two plays, with Hayward recovering the loose ball. One Keenan Allen touchdown later and things were a little spicy. It marked the first time the No Fly Zone missed Ward.
On the next Broncos possession, Jamaal Charles had a nice run up the middle of the field but fighting for extra yardage, the ball was knocked out. He found the speedy Travis Benjamin for a 38-yard score to cut the lead to three points. While the Broncos were one of only three teams to hold Bosa without a sack, he was very disruptive against them.