San Diego, CA – Philip Rivers completed 35-of-42 passes for 401 yards and three touchdowns as the San Diego Chargers held off the Dallas Cowboys for a 30-21 win on Sunday.
Antonio Gates caught 10 passes for 136 yards and a touchdown and Danny Woodhead finished with five catches for 54 yards and two touchdowns for the Chargers (2-2), who bounced back from a last-second loss to the Tennessee Titans in Week 3.
"We've had a lot of adversity, a lot of close games," Rivers said. "We found a way to get it done."
Tony Romo completed 26-of-36 passes for 245 yards and a pair of touchdowns. Dez Bryant caught six passes for 81 yards and two TDs and rookie Terrance Williams caught seven passes for 71 yards, but had a costly fumble in the closing minutes for the Cowboys (2-2), who will host the Denver Broncos in Week 5.
The Chargers entered the fourth quarter trailing 21-20, but Nick Novak nailed a 23-yard field goal to cap a 13-play, 84-yard drive just 14 seconds into the frame.
After forcing a Dallas punt, the Chargers added to their cushion as Rivers hit Gates with a 56-yard touchdown pass. Rivers floated one over Gates' right shoulder down the middle of the field and the tight end pulled away from Cowboys linebacker Sean Lee and cruised across the goal line for the score.
The Cowboys drove deep into San Diego territory after Romo scrambled for 15 yards on 3rd-and-8. Romo then hit Williams with a pass over the middle and the rookie broke for the goal line, but was rocked by Eric Weddle and fumbled into the end zone with 2:42 remaining.
Dallas managed to force a San Diego punt with 1:02 left, but couldn't find the end zone on a desperation drive.
The Chargers got on the board with 7:12 left in the first quarter. Rivers floated a pass to Woodhead in the end zone, just out of the reach of a Bruce Carter, to make it 7-0.
The Cowboys found the end zone early in the second as Romo hit Bryant with a pass in the back right corner, capping a 9-play, 85-yard trek. Bryant outjumped Richard Marshall in the end zone and came down with the ball to tie things up.
Novak nailed a 36-yard field goal with 5:16 left in the first half to make it 10-7, but the Cowboys answered right back with a touchdown to take a 14-10 lead.
Romo hit Bryant on a crossing pattern and the receiver broke a tackle and raced to the pylon for his second score of the game.
Lee picked off Rivers on the ensuing drive and returned it 52 yards for a touchdown to make it 21-10.
Novak's 42-yard field goal in the closing seconds of the half made it 21-13.
"To go up by eight on the road, I thought that was a good situation to be in," Cowboys head coach Jason Garret said. "The challenge was to come out and get a stop and then keep going and we didn't do that."
Rivers went back to Woodhead for a 13-yard TD on the opening drive of the second half to pull San Diego within 21-20.
River set the NFL record for highest completion percentage in an NFL game at 83.3 percent ... Ryan Mathews picked up 62 yards on 19 carries for San Diego ... San Diego has won each of the last two meetings ... Dallas leads the all- time series 6-4 ... DeMarco Murray rushed for 70 yards on 14 carries ... Cowboys wide receiver Miles Austin was inactive with a hamstring injury ... The Chargers will visit the Oakland Raiders in Week 5.