Los Angeles Chargers vs Baltimore Ravens

Baltimore Ravens -3

Game Total – 43


Players to Watch

Los Angeles Chargers

Philip Rivers - Rivers will have his work cutout for him as he faces one of the leagues best defenses in the Baltimore Ravens.  In the matchup between these two teams back in Week 16 we saw Rivers held to just 181 yards passing with zero touchdowns and two interceptions.  Despite that poor performance we saw an MVP-like season from Rivers this year as he threw for 4,308 yards with 32 touchdowns and just 12 interceptions.

Keenan Allen – Allen led the Chargers in receiving this season, catching 97 passes for 1,196 yards and six touchdowns.  Against the Ravens in Week 16 he was held to five catches on eight targets for 58 yards.  The Ravens defense is going to key in on him again as he is clearly the go to option for Rivers.

Melvin Gordon – The Chargers have been careful with Gordon as he comes back from injury.  He returned after missing three games to play the Ravens in Week 16 but saw just 12 carries and three targets.  Despite the limited usage he still managed 54 total yards and a touchdown.  The Chargers will need a bigger workload from Gordon if they hope to this matchup.

Mike Williams – It has been an up and down season for Williams in his second year in the league.  He finished with 43 catches for 664 yards and a team high 11 touchdowns. He is serious end zone threat given his size and if the Chargers were smart they would try to utilize his route running like he was a tight end as Baltimore has struggle against tight ends this season.

Baltimore Ravens

Lamar Jackson – Jackson took over as the Ravens starting QB back in Week 11 and hasn’t looked back.  Not much of a passer, Jackson has rushed for 556 yards while throwing for 1,114 yards as the team’s starter.  Against the Chargers in Week 16 he did have his best passing game of the season, throwing for a season high 204 yards and a score.  The Chargers defense was focused on keeping him in the pocket as he was limited to a season low 39 yards rushing.  The Chargers game plan has to be the same if they hope to win this one because if Jackson can use his legs the Ravens will be in great shape.

Gus Edwards – The Ravens will run the ball all day long if you let them. Their lead back right now is Gus Edwards who also burst onto the scene in Week 11 when he ran for 115 yards against the Bengals. Since Week 11 he ran for a total of 654 yards.  Against the Chargers in Week 16 he rushed for 92 yards on 14 carries.  The Ravens are built to run the clock and shut down teams with their elite defense.  Edwards figures to be involved today.

Kenneth Dixon - While Edwards is the lead back the Ravens still use Dixon as well.  Better suited as a pass catcher, we saw Dixon run for 117 yards in Week 17 against the Browns.  Both backs will be deployed today.  Against the Chargers in Week 16, Dixon ran eight times for 28 yards and added two catches on three targets for 20 yards.

Pre-Game Props

1) The last non-kneeling, offensive play of the 1st Quarter is a passing play (We'll leave this open until the 2:00 mark) Yes - 2.6/ No - 2.4

I am going with a NO for this one.  Both teams like to run the football, the Ravens especially.  Give me a running play to end the first quarter.

2) M. Gordon (LAC) and M. Crabtree (BAL) combine for 3 or more receptions in the 1st Quarter Yes - 1.9/ No - 3.6

I am leaning NO for this one.  While I think Gordon will be pretty involved today I am unsure he sees three catches in the first given how stout the Ravens defense.  I also don’t see Crabtree catching three passes given how dominant the Ravens running game is.

3) Either team rushes for 30 or more total yards in the 1st Quarter Yes - 2.9/ No - 2.1

This one is a big yes for me.  I see the Ravens at the very least running for 30 yards here. Jackson is very capable of gaining big yardage an we know they will be running a lot today.

4) The first offensive play of the 1st Quarter is a completed pass Yes - 3.5/ No - 2.3

Nope, the first offensive play is going to be a run.

5) BAL gains 25 or more total yards on their opening drive Yes - 3.0/ No - 2.0

I am going to go with a NO for this one.  I think the Ravens are forced to go three-and-out on their first drive.

6) P. Rivers (LAC) completes 4 or more passes on the LAC opening drive Yes - 3.7/ No - 1.6 

Nope, the Ravens defense is too good for Rivers to get it going right away. I think both teams punt on their first drive.