Khalil Mack, Chargers shut out Patriots, end 3-game skid

Khalil Mack had a pair of sacks to headline a sparkling defensive performance by the Los Angeles Chargers, who blanked the New England Patriots 6-0 on Sunday afternoon in Foxborough, Mass.

Los Angeles (5-7) totaled five sacks, two of which extinguished a potential fourth-quarter rally by the Patriots.

Tyquan Thornton gained 39 yards on an end-around play to set New England (2-10) up at the Chargers 35 with 8:56 left in the game. The Patriots soon faced third-and-3, and Eric Kendricks got to quarterback Bailey Zappe for a 2-yard loss.

New England opted to go for it on the ensuing fourth-and-5, but its offensive line faltered once again, letting Derwin James Jr. sack Zappe for a loss of 8.

The Patriots got the ball back with 4:36 to go, but they were unable to work their way into Los Angeles territory, and the visitors then ran out the clock.

Cameron Dicker kicked a pair of 38-yard field goals in the second quarter to provide the Chargers with all the offense they would need to snap a three-game skid.

Neither quarterback could find their footing due to rainy, cold conditions. Los Angeles’ Justin Herbert completed 22 of 37 passes for 212 yards, while Zappe finished with 141 yards on 13-for-25 passing.

Zappe was making his first start of the season in place of Mac Jones, who was benched this week. Jones has thrown for 10 touchdowns and 12 interceptions in 11 games this season.

Although it lost its fifth straight game, New England outgained the Chargers 257-241.

Dicker opened the scoring with 9:09 left in the second quarter to put Los Angeles up 3-0. His second field goal came with 44 seconds remaining in the period.

New England had a promising drive going late in the first quarter, but it quickly took a turn for the worse.

After the Patriots had worked down to the Chargers 31, Rhamondre Stevenson was dropped for a loss of 1 and coughed up the football. Linebacker Tuli Tuipulotu recovered the fumble, and Stevenson also injured an ankle on the play, knocking him out of the game.

Ezekiel Elliott took over as New England’s top running back and finished with 52 yards on 17 carries.