Chargers’ Uchenna Nwosu provides spark versus Raiders amid defensive mistakes

LAS VEGAS — Chargers edge rusher Uchenna Nwosu kept the defense afloat while the Chargers took their lumps in the opening quarter of Sunday night’s showdown against the Las Vegas Raiders at Allegiant Stadium.

The Raiders jumped to a double-digit lead, but Nwosu’s constant pressure in the backfield minimized the damage and allowed the Chargers to take a lead before halftime.

Nwosu had a tackle for loss and a sack during a second quarter drive that eventually ended with the Raiders punting. The Chargers capitalized on the momentum and executed a 13-play, 90-yard touchdown drive that gave them a 14-10 lead with 1:52 left before halftime.

The scoring drive took 7:02 off the clock to give Nwosu and the Chargers’ defense a breather.

Nwosu entered halftime with four total tackles, three tackles for loss, one pass breakup and a sack. Despite Nwosu’s stellar play in the opening half, the Chargers’ defense committed many mistakes to go into the locker room with a 17-14 deficit.

The Chargers’ defense had all 11 starters on the field after linebacker Drue Tranquill, who was dealing with an ankle injury, was made active before kickoff.

The Chargers had run-stopper Justin Jones and Pro Bowlers Derwin James and Joey Bosa on the field, but the Raiders constantly made the Chargers pay for their mistakes, especially on third down.

Tight end Foster Moreau had a 44-yard catch-and-run play on the Raiders’ opening drive for a touchdown, and…

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