It came down to the wire, but the Los Angeles Chargers and Eaton’s Austin Ekeler survived to advance on Sunday in the National Football League playoffs.
Despite a 20-point lead in the fourth quarter, the Chargers needed a Baltimore Ravens turnover with 19 seconds to play to hold on for a 23-17 AFC Wild Card win on Sunday in Baltimore.
Ekeler, a second-year running back chipped in on the Chargers’ cause. Not only did Ekeler – an undrafted free agent from Western Colorado State in 2017 — arrive at the game in this splashy shirt but he had 43 yards from scrimmage — rushing and receiving.
Ekeler had 29 yards rushing and 14 yards receiving, including a catch out of the backfield for a first down late in the second quarter that set up a Chargers’ field goal.
The Chargers escaped. They led 20-3 with 4 minutes remaining in the game before the Ravens scored twice to make the game interesting. Los Angeles now goes to New England to play the Patriots in the divisional round at 11:05 a.m. on Jan. 13.
Ekeler, after a standout career at Western from 2013-17, found his way to Los Angeles after the 2017 NFL Draft. He was featured in this story in early May.
This season, Ekeler had 958 yards from scrimmage with six touchdowns this season including one TD last week in the season finale in Denver in front of family and friends.
He tweeted a photo on Sunday morning, hours before the Chargers’ win and last week Ekeler talked about his journey to the NFL in a conversation with national sports radio host Jim Rome.
— Austin Ekeler (@AustinEkeler) January 6, 2019