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Monday, December 24, 2012
Five Plays: Jets fall to Chargers

By Matt Ehalt

Here are five plays that shaped Sunday's 27-17 loss to the Chargers.

1. Not a good sendoff. This might be special teams coordinator Mike Westhoff's final game and the Jets didn't give him a parting gift as they allowed a 63-yard touchdown on the first punt of the game to Micheal Spurlock. The Chargers took a 7-0 lead and it was a bad omen of things to come.

2. Fourth down. The Jets led 14-7 in the second quarter when the Chargers faced a 4th-and-2 at the Jets' 34-yard line. Danario Alexander found open space on a slant and went for 18 yards to put the Chargers in good position for an eventual field goal. Had the Jets stopped the Chargers, it could have been a different score heading into the half.

3. Penalties kill. The Jets trailed 17-14 and were able to force a punt in the third quarter, but the Chargers were awarded a first down because Darrin Walls was flagged for holding. The Chargers went on to score when Antonio Gates caught a 34-yard score.

4. Interception. With the Jets down 24-14, quarterback Greg McElroy tried to lead the Jets down the field to make it a one-score game but he threw his lone interception of the game in Jets territory, leading to a Chargers field goal.

5. Ball game. The Jets trailed 27-17 and had the ball in Chargers territory when McElroy was sacked and lost a fumble. The Chargers recovered the ball and it pretty much sealed the Jets' fate on Sunday afternoon at MetLife Stadium.