Chargers' youth dazzles but ultimately falls short against seasoned Bucs

4:51 PM ET

This Los Angeles Chargers loss, a 38-31 setback to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Raymond James Stadium, didn’t come down to the last play like last week’s fumbled hook-and-ladder against the Panthers. It didn’t come in overtime, like the one against the Kansas City Chiefs two weeks ago. But it was another close defeat that 22-year-old rookie quarterback Justin Herbert almost pulled out.

Herbert, starting his third straight game since Tyrod Taylor went out because of a punctured lung, battled valiantly for much of the game, staking his team to a 24-7 lead without his go-to guy, running back Austin Ekeler, who injured his hamstring in the first quarter. Herbert, who threw for 290 yards and three touchdowns on 20-of-25 passing, played well — throwing touchdown passes to Tyron Johnson, Donald Parham and Jalen Guyton.

But his youth, and the youth of the Chargers, also led to some rough moments. Herbert threw an interception to Carlton Davis with 2:35 left as he was attempting to lead the Chargers on a game-winning drive. Rookie running back Joshua Kelley fumbled the handoff deep in Chargers territory just before halftime with the Bolts up 24-7, changing the momentum the

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