The playoffs are here, as we take a look at one of the AFC Wildcard matchups between the Los Angeles Chargers and the Baltimore Ravens. The Chargers finished second in the AFC West with a 12-4 record, which was the same as the Kansas City Chiefs but they held the tiebreaker. The Ravens clinched the AFC North last week thanks to their 26-24 victory over the Cleveland Browns, finishing the regular season with a 10-6 record.
Chargers vs. Ravens Odds
The game will be played this Sunday at 12:05, and Baltimore is favorited at home -2.5.
Spread: Ravens -2.5
Chargers vs. Ravens Head to Head
It’s crazy to think about the paths each of these teams have taken to make it to the playoffs. People were wondering midseason if Ravens head coach John Harbaugh should be fired or not, but instead he changed the whole complexion of the offense to fit around Lamar Jackson. Joe Flacco has taken the back seat to Jackson who has led his team to a 6-1 record since taking over following their Week 10 bye week. The Ravens one loss this season came against the Chiefs in Week 14, who they could end up meeting once more if they can make it past this Chargers team. The bread and butter of this Baltimore team remains their incredible defense. The defense ranks top five in the league and 1stin total yards allowed (292.9).
Chargers vs. Ravens Stats
The Chargers got a taste of that defense in Week 16 when they fell to the Ravens 22-10. Known for their ability to do it on both sides of the ball, the Chargers average the 6th most points per game (26.8). For years in the AFC West it was between the Broncos and the Chiefs leaving the Chargers out of the playoff mix. People criticized Philip Rivers for being a hotheaded quarterback with a turnover problem. Everything clicked for Rivers this season, as he completed 68.3% of his passes for 4,308 passing yards and a 32:12 TD to INT ratio. Rivers and company will be traveling to M&T Bank Stadium this team around, as the Ravens finished 6-2 at home in the regular season. The Chargers were one of the best teams on the road at 7-1, as they also have a top ten defense on their side. Derwin James has had an incredible rookie season at safety, and Casey Hayward, Joey Bosa, and Melvin Ingram are all names to watch out for.
We’re looking forward to seeing Eric Weddle host his former team after playing eight seasons for the Chargers. The Chargers have an advantage at the quarterback position, as Rivers brings poise and leadership to the table. It remains to be seen how big of a spotlight Lamar Jackson can handle playing in the playoffs his rookie season. It’ll be interesting to see if the Ravens revert back to a proven playoff quarterback like Joe Flacco if Jackson struggles. Expect the Chargers defense to keep a QB spy in on most plays and look to limit the read option, which is what the Ravens like to do with Jackson.
Chargers vs. Ravens News
Melvin Gordon confirmed he’s playing in Sunday’s Wild Card game despite injuring his ankle late in the Week 17 game against the Broncos. He’s less than 100% due to ankle and knee issues, so Gordon’s workload could be scaled back a bit.
Chargers vs. Ravens Predictions
We’re taking the Ravens at home this weekend 31-25.