Having put together a rare winning streak, the Jacksonville Jaguars appear to have a favorable matchup as they look to tie their longest run of the past eight seasons and remain in the thick of the AFC South race.
The San Diego Chargers, losers of a league-worst six in a row, visit EverBank Field on Sunday.
The Jaguars have won two straight for just the second time in five years after a late comeback in a 19-13 victory over Tennessee on Nov. 19.
Rashad Greene's 63-yard punt return with 3:34 remaining set up Blake Bortles' go-ahead touchdown pass to Julius Thomas, and Jacksonville's defense followed with a pair of key plays. Davon House recovered a fumble with 3:19 to go and Andre Branch ended the game by sacking Marcus Mariota at the Jaguars' 25-yard line.
Winners of three of four, the Jaguars (4-6) are one game behind Houston and Indianapolis in their weak division. They will try to keep the pressure on with their fourth three-game win streak since the beginning of the 2008 season.
"It's been great to see us come together and start to win some games. It's exciting to see where we can go," linebacker Paul Posluszny said. "We know we have a lot of potential when we look back at the games. We know we can play better and better. It's exciting to be in this environment and have this opportunity."
The Jaguars have lost four in a row to San Diego, including defeats in both of the last two seasons, but the reeling Chargers (2-8) are tied for the league's worst record.
San Diego endured a 33-3 loss to Kansas City on Sunday as prolific passer Philip Rivers was limited to a season-low 178 yards. Tight end Antonio Gates was so frustrated by the team's performance that he was seen arguing with Rivers in the first half.
Rivers didn't have top receiver Keenan Allen for the second straight week because of a season-ending lacerated kidney. Malcom Floyd (shoulder) was also out, though the Chargers got left tackle King Dunlap and guard Orlando Franklin back on the field.
Rivers had totaled 2,143 yards in his previous six games and topped 300 in a team-record five in a row.
"I think it's just about being a pro at this point. Are you going to be a man and come to work every day and do your job? I think that is what it is," he said. "The ball is going to get kicked off next Sunday and Jacksonville sure the heck isn't going to feel sorry for us."
Rivers had 377 yards and three TDs in a 33-14 home win over Jacksonville on Sept. 28, 2014. Bortles threw for 254 yards, one TD and two interceptions in his first NFL start.
Rivers has 10 touchdowns and two interceptions during San Diego's win streak in the series.
"The guy is phenomenal. I think what's been impressive with him is that they've had some injuries and he still stays the same, very productive," Jaguars coach Gus Bradley said.
The Chargers haven't dropped seven in a row since losing their final nine games of 2001. If the Jaguars can solve their recent issues in the red zone, San Diego might have trouble avoiding another defeat.
Jacksonville has managed four touchdowns in its last 14 trips inside the 20-yard line. The Jaguars went 1 for 5 against the Titans and kicked four field goals.
"Definitely an area that we need to take a strong look at," Bradley said. "I know it's popped up from game to game, and we have to address it."
Rivers had the second-best completion rate of his career in his most recent visit to Jacksonville on Oct. 20, 2013. He went 22 of 26 (84.6 percent) in a 24-6 victory, and San Diego has won its past two games there by a combined 42 points.
The Jaguars are also looking their first three-game home win streak since Nov. 14-Dec. 12, 2010. The Chargers have dropped five in a row on the road dating to Dec. 28.