The Chargers recovered an onside kick attempt to begin the second half, gaining possession at the Broncos 49-yard line.
Needing a strong series to keep San Diego from getting points, the Denver defense forced its seventh three-and-out of the game.
Linebacker D.J. Williams brought down running back Ryan Mathews in the backfield for a 2-yard loss and linebacker Von Miller sacked Philip Rivers, his second of the game, forcing a fumble that San Diego recovered.
San Diego punter Mike Scifres then pinned the Broncos offense at its own 2-yard line. After running back Ronnie Hillman ran for no gain on first down, the Chargers defense brought heat, and linebacker Sean Phillips sacked Peyton Manning in the end zone for a safety.
The safety made the score 17-9, and the Chargers then regained possession on the ensuing punt at their own 36-yard line, where the Broncos defense turned in another three-and-out.