Matt Ryan threw for 208 yards and three scores in the first half to lead the Atlanta Falcons to a 27-3 victory over the San Diego Chargers.
Ball hogging safety Thomas DeCoud led the Falcons from the defensive side of the ball, pilfering two passes from Philip Rivers and recovering a fumble.
“Turning the ball over is what ultimately gets you beat,” said Philip Rivers. It was Atlanta’s ability to capitalize on both miscues seized by DeCoud in the first half that put San Diego in a 20-0 hole at halftime.
Falcons’ linebacker Sean Weatherspoon created the first turnover with a hit that knocked the ball out of Chargers running back Ryan Matthews arms on a potential scoring drive. The fumble recovered by DeCoud, turned into a 96 yard scoring drive for the Falcons.
DeCoud came up with another turnover picking off Rivers at the San Diego 29 yard line seconds after the two minute warning break. Ryan made quick work of the drive finding Julio Jones on the right side for a 9 yard touchdown.
“Those two turnovers in that sequence they killed us,” said Rivers of the fumble and interception.
San Diego added their only points of the game in the third quarter on a 41 yard field goal by Nate Kaeding. It was the first time in 151 games the team had gone without scoring a touchdown in a game.
“When you turn the ball over you're basically stealing a drive and that's what we've been able to do,” said Falcons Coach Mike Smith. “We did a really nice job converting those into points today."
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