FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) -LaDainian Tomlinson spent most of the first half of Sunday's AFC championship game bundled up in a parka, not on the field.
Of the three big-name Chargers players who had injuries coming into the game against the undefeated New England Patriots, Tomlinson seemed to have the best chance of playing. But he ended up carrying only twice for five yards and catching a 1-yard swing pass before retreating to the sideline.
The team announced that the two-time NFL rushing champion had a sore knee, and could return. He didn't play during the Chargers' final six possessions of the half.
Tomlinson, the two-time NFL rushing champion, hyperextended his left knee in a 28-24 upset win over the Indianapolis Colts a week earlier.
He was replaced by Michael Turner and Darren Sproles. Turner had 40 yards on 11 carries, and Sproles had 34 yards on three carries.
Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers started despite being listed as doubtful on the injury report with a sprained right knee. He was intercepted twice, one of which set up the Patriots' second touchdown. Rivers was running gingerly as he came out for the second half.
Pro Bowl tight end Antonio Gates played for the second straight week with a dislocated left big toe.
The Patriots led 14-9 at halftime.
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