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Kicker Dustin Hopkins boots Chargers to OT win despite injured hamstring 

Throughout much of Monday's game, Dustin Hopkins' right hamstring was enveloped by a heat wrap.

The Los Angeles Chargers kicker was clearly injured and clearly in pain. He was also clearly clutch.

Hopkins, bum hammy and all, connected on a 39-yard game-winning kick in overtime to lift the Chargers over the Denver Broncos, 19-16.

"He had a hamstring cramp/strain. It just didn't feel right," Chargers head coach Brandon Staley said after the game, via team transcript. "You can't say enough about him hanging in there."

It was a perfect and painful night for Hopkins, who made each of his five kicks -- one extra point and field goals of 37, 31, 35 and 39 yards -- despite injuring himself on his very first attempt.

"That first extra point I just felt a pop, and it kind of went downhill from there," Hopkins told ESPN's Lisa Salters after the game.

At one point in the game, the Chargers announced Hopkins was questionable to return. Four minutes later he kicked a field goal. Hopkins didn't miss any time and he didn't miss any kicks.

"I was hurting pretty good," he said.

In a Monday nighter rife with defense and low on offense, Hopkins' 13 points were huge.

Down 10-0 after the first quarter, the Chargers tied the game on Hopkins' first field goal, tied it again at 13 in the third quarter on his second, sent it to overtime on his 35-yarder with 3:58 to go in regulation and won it on his 39-yarder.

In his game-winning follow through, Hopkins, as he'd done on previous kicks, fell to the SoFi Stadium field after his left leg buckled. His teammates joyously gathered around him and picked him, just as he had for them all game.

"It didn't matter," Hopkins said of the distance. "And I don't mean that like, 'I could've kicked that from wherever.' That's not what I mean. It just meant if it was gonna hurt, what's the difference if it's 20 or it's 55, you know? It was just like, well, give it a rip, and that was it."

Amid all the pop and circumstance of the evening, Hopkins came up clutch to lift the Chargers to a Monday night victory.

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