The Atlanta Falcons as a franchise have been bad for most of their existence, and they have not done too much winning. From their inception in 1966 up until now, they have an all time 380-487-6 record, and are bottom five in the league in overall win percentage percentage.
The Falcons have been so bad that there are just seven opponents against whom they have more wins than losses. The Los Angeles Chargers fall within that category, and they are actually the franchise against whom the Falcons have their highest ever win percentage thanks to an 8-3 head to head record.
In their first ever meeting in 1973, the Birds set the tone for how things would be head-to-head with a decisive 41-0 victory.
These teams never really faced off much due to being in separate conferences, but when they did Atlanta often won — getting out to an 8-1 record through their meeting in 2012.
The once-San Diego Chargers won each of the past two meetings, in 2016 and 2020, to string together their first bit of success against the Falcons. They now would like to continue their modest win streak, while the Birds aim to take control back.
Neither team had anything to play for when the 4-8 Falcons traveled to brand new SoFi Stadium for a meeting against the 3-9 Chargers. It was more so a game of seeing who would gain an advantage in picking in the upcoming NFL Draft.
Los Angeles was entering a new era with rookie Justin Herbert looking every bit the star they had hoped he would be, while the Falcons were in the midst of their third consecutive losing season, having already fired Dan Quinn earlier in the year. The Falcons had maybe their most entertaining play of the season in this one, when Russell Gage out of the wildcat found Calvin Ridley for a 39-yard touchdown pass to tie the game at 7-7.
The Chargers found it difficult to keep up with Ridley all afternoon, but they were powered by Austin Ekeler’s 146 yards from scrimmage, and the result was a back and forth affair where nobody ever led by more than one score. In the end, two very bad Matt Ryan interceptions on back-to-back drives late first ruined Atlanta’s own chance to score and then set LA up for a Michael Badgley field goal for the win.
That was Atlanta’s second straight loss in a string of five straight to finish the season at 4-12, while it started a four-game winning streak for LA, who finished with a 7-9 record.