DENVER — Brandon McManus’ 53-yard field goal as time expired, set up by a long interference call, capped a furious final 14 seconds and gave the Broncos a 23-20 victory over the Los Angeles Chargers.
Rookie quarterback Drew Lock’s debut win for Denver came a month after Brandon Allen beat Cleveland. It made the Broncos the first team in league history to have two quarterbacks start and win their NFL debuts in the same season.
The winner by McManus, who stormed off the field just before halftime when coach Vic Fangio changed his mind about letting him attempt a record 65-yard field goal, was set up by a 38-yard pass interference call on Chargers cornerback Casey Hayward Jr.
Diontae Spencer returned the kickoff 26 yards to the Denver 28 after the Chargers tied the game at 20 on Michael Badgley’s 46-yard field goal with 14 seconds remaining. With 9 seconds left, Lock threw deep down the right sideline to Sutton, who caught his two first-quarter touchdown passes.
Sutton collided with Hayward and the yellow flag came out. The Chargers argued vehemently about the defensive pass interference, giving the Broncos the ball at the Chargers 35-yard line with 3 seconds remaining.
The Chargers (4-8) continued jawing with both the Broncos (4-8) and the officiating crew as the Broncos stormed the field following McManus’ field goal.