Depleted Broncos eliminated from playoff contention following 34-13 loss to Chargers

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The Denver Broncos’ playoff hopes were still alive going into their game against the Los Angeles Chargers on Sunday afternoon.

The Tennessee Titans defeated the Miami Dolphins 34-3 and the Los Angeles Rams defeated the Baltimore Ravens 20-19 in the early afternoon window, keeping Denver in playoff contention.

The Broncos were eliminated from the playoff hunt, though, when they fell to the Chargers 34-13 in the late afternoon window, dropping to 7-9 on the season.

Drew Lock briefly exited the game in the first quarter after suffering a shoulder injury, but he returned to the game after sitting out just one drive. The 25-year-old quarterback went 18-of-25 passing for 245 yards with one touchdown and no turnovers in the loss.

Dalton Risner, Denver’s left guard, also left the game with an elbow injury in the first quarter and he did not return.

The Broncos were depleted going into Sunday’s game, missing starting quarterback Teddy Bridgewater (concussion), cornerback Ronald Darby (shoulder) and inside linebacker Kenny Young (concussion). Denver also had 12 other players miss the game following a COVID-19 outbreak.

The Broncos will now be playing for pride when they host the Kansas City Chiefs in their season finale next week. The Chiefs, meanwhile, will be playing for the No. 1 seed in the AFC.

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