Running back Austin Ekeler scores for Chargers
(Mike Nowak/LA Chargers)

The LA Chargers defeated the Rams on Sunday, 31-10, at SoFi Stadium, a win that could give them a much-needed boost entering postseason play. The Chargers can clinch a top wild-card spot with a win over the Denver Broncos this Sunday at Empower Field at Mile High.

“Our approach is going to be to try to win this ballgame and play as well as we can play heading into the playoffs,” head coach Brandon Staley said. “I think there’s certainly an advantage to being the 5-seed, from where I stand, so we’re going to try and get there.”

Chargers Mike Williams Makes a Spectacular Catch
(Ty Nowell / LA Chargers)

The Rams scored first in their hometown matchup against the Bolts with a 23-yard field goal, but Charger running back Austin Ekeler was on fire! Ekeler finished with 122 rushing yards, two touchdowns on ten carries, and caught four passes for 39 yards. He scored the longest run of his career, a 72-yard run that Ekeler said was “blocked perfectly.” “I got caught earlier in the year, so the only thing on my mind was speed, speed, speed, don’t get caught,” he said.

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The Rams could not stop the Chargers in the red zone, as the Bolts scored three times. Charger QB Justin Herbert was 21 of 28 for 212 yards. Herbert found tight ends Gerald Everett on a six-yard touchdown pass and a three-yard pass to Donald Parham Jr., his first season score. An excellent score for Parham, who has spent most of the season dealing with hamstring and concussion issues. Bolt running back Joshua Kelley finished with 45 yards on nine rushes, and Larry Rountree III contributed ten carries for 15 yards.

Chargers v. Rams at SoFi Stadium
(Ty Nowell /LA Chargers)

A standout in Sunday’s win was Mike Williams, who contributed mightily to his team with a highlight reel catch that Williams himself called “crazy.” He finished the game with seven receptions for 94 yards. By the middle of the fourth quarter, the Chargers were sure that the game was under their control, prompting head coach Brandon Staley to take Herbert out of the game with 10:47 left in the fourth quarter.

For the beleaguered Rams (5-11), Cam Akers, a bright spot, rushed for 123 yards, but Baker Mayfield, making his third start as quarterback for the Rams, finished 11 of 19 for 132 yards and could not elude a defense that sacked him three times.

The Chargers will finish the regular season on the road against the Denver Broncos (4-12), and the Rams will face the Seahawks (8-8) at Lumen Field in Seattle.