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Palmer, Samuel Jr Shine in Loss; 49ers Edge Out Chargers 15-10
By Jarred Davis, Contributing Writer
Published August 24, 2021

San Francisco 49ers rookie quarterback Trey Lance (5) finished 8 of 14 for 102 yards, two touchdowns and an interception against the Chargers in a 15-10 victory on Sunday, Aug. 22, 2021 (Courtesy of the L.A. Chargers)

The Los Angeles Chargers looked to see its promising young talent shine with most of its starters continuing to rest in week 2 of preseason football. The rookies did not disappoint.

Josh Palmer displayed why Los Angeles drafted the aggressive third-round wide receiver, Asante Samuel Jr did the same flashing his superior ball skills, and the Chargers played a close game, ultimately falling to the San Francisco 49ers 15-10 on Sunday evening at SoFi Stadium.

49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo was picked off by the second-round rookie cornerback in the first quarter at the Chargers 15-yard line while slightly overthrowing a pass intended for Brandon Aiyuk on play 15 of the drive.

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“I was really excited, but I just want to make enough plays for my team to win, so we didn’t win, so it wasn’t enough,” said Samuel on his interception.

The interception however, led to an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty by Samuel, moving the ball back to LA’s 7-yard line after he celebrated by running to the endzone and took off his helmet.

Los Angeles Chargers defensive back Tevaughn Campbell (20) intercepted 49ers quarterback Trey Lance on Sunday, Aug. 22, 2021 (Courtesy of the L.A. Chargers)

“It won’t happen again,” said Samuel, stating it was a rookie mistake.

Garoppolo was 3 of 6 for 15 yards, leaving the door open for the quarterback competition in San Francisco.

“We’re always trying to emphasize playing clean football, because that’s ultimately what leads to being a successful team,” Chargers coach Brandon Staley said.

The Chargers continued to evaluate the open competition for its backup spot behind sophomore quarterback Justin Herbert.

Easton Stick started and went 10-of-14 for 85 yards and a touchdown, finding his newly drafted rookie weapon in Palmer for a three-yard touchdown pass.

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Chase Daniel got the start in the second half and completed 14-of-21 passes for 60 yards and an interception.

“It’s been a really good competition between those two, I thought both of them did a nice job tonight,” said Staley.

Palmer has drawn rave reviews thus far in camp and preseason, flashing again after his score that gave the Chargers a 7-2 lead after Stick was sacked in the end zone by Jordan Willis for a Safety.

Michael Badgley then drilled a 50-yard field goal to extend the Chargers lead to 10-2 before the 49ers began a run of their own.

“You’re kind of just playing at that point,” Stick said. “Josh found a way to kind of uncover there in the back. A few guys kind of attached to me, and there was enough of a window to kind of sneak it in there.”

Trey Lance, the third overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft impressed by going 8-of-14 for 102 yards, two touchdowns and an interception for the 49ers.

“I think this week was huge just for my development as a football player, not even necessarily for tonight, if that makes sense,” Lance said. “I think I learned so much this week getting to practice against another defense, getting to be around different guys and have a different experience in a different setting.”

Los Angeles Chargers rookie wide receiver Josh Palmer (5) caught a five-yard touchdown against the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday, Aug. 22, 2021 (Courtesy of the L.A. Chargers)

Lance led the 49ers on a six play 75-yard drive that was capped by a five-yard score to veteran wideout Mohamed Sanu Sr to cut their deficit to 10-8 in the third.

San Francisco then took a 15-10 lead after Lance connected on a 16-yard touchdown with former Charger wide receiver Travis Benjamin.

“Trey can’t get enough two-minute drives before the regular season starts, so I was pumped with that. And then we did the third quarter, I was real happy with how he finished,” 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan said.

The Chargers next will end their preseason on the road Saturday against the Seattle Seahawks.

Categories: Football | Sports
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