By Chris Schisler
Baltimore Ravens fans, it is game day. Here is a look at the Baltimore Ravens battle against the Los Angeles Chargers boiled down into simple bullet points, so you can be the smartest fan in the room.
- The Ravens and Chargers are both 4-1 with quarterbacks who are in the MVP discussion.
- Lamar Jackson has completed 112-167 passes for 1,519 yards and eight touchdowns. Jackson also has 341 rushing yards this season.
- Justin Herbert has completed 139-207 passes for 1,576 yards and 13 touchdowns.
- The Ravens have been the master of the close victory this season. They average 27.2 points per game while their opponents average 23.4 points per game.
- The Chargers are in the same bracket on that front. They average 28.4 points and their opponents have an average of 23.2 points per game.
- This game is expected to be a shootout. The Chargers and the Ravens are both averaging well over 400 yards per contest.
- As much attention as the Chargers get for their passing game, this offense is balanced and the Chargers have one of the best running backs in Austin Ekeler.
Key Factors in this game:
- Weather shouldn’t matter in this game. It’s a nice day to be at the stadium, so the fans should be happy at the very least.
- The Ravens have are at -1 with their turnover ratio. The Ravens have to protect the football against a Chargers team against a team that makes turnovers hard to come by.
- Odafe Oweh needs to have a big game. He has three sacks and has made an impact in every game. The Ravens need him to make life difficult for Herbert. This game could come down to a player like Oweh making one or two plays that change the game.
- Tyre Phillips, Rashod Bateman, and Miles Boykin are back for this game. While the dichotomy at wide receiver probably doesn’t see an instant change, getting Phillips back could be big for the offensive line.
- The Ravens have been winning the hard way. This is a game where they can’t get away with a ton of mistakes. This has to be the sharpest performance of the season.
Baltimore Ravens matchups: A mix of good and bad
- The Chargers’ secondary has its hands full as much as the secondary of the Ravens does. Expect a lot of zone from the Ravens in this game. They have limitations and the Chargers have so much talent at wide receiver. The good news is that the Chargers have to make the choice. Do they get beat by Marquise Brown or Mark Andrews? It will be tough for them to stop both.
- The Chargers’ defensive front could overpower the offensive line. Jackson could have to do it all again. Expect quarterback running plays to the outside to try to loosen up the middle for the running backs.
- The offensive line of the Chargers is beatable. The front seven has to take over this game for the Ravens. The Ravens need a huge day from guys like Calais Campbell and Justin Madubuike while Brandon Williams needs to show up.
The most important players for both teams:
- For the Chargers, it’s about their wide receivers pulling out all the stops and making plays when they have the football in the open field. This is a huge game for Keenan Allen, Mike Williams, and Jalen Guyton.
- The Ravens don’t have an answer for Joey Bosa, and Jerry Tillery could force some inside pressure behind the line of scrimmage. The Chargers’ defensive front probably watched how the Raiders beat the Ravens and have eyes on taking over this game.
- Austin Ekeler is the worst thing a defense that can’t tackle proficiently wants to see
- For the Ravens, it’s about Lamar Jackson. It’s always about Jackson. You know he’s going to ball out but you need to see him protect each possession of the football here.
- Odafe Oweh, Calais Campbell, and Justin Madubuike have to be the big key to the Ravens winning the line of scrimmage on defense.
- Marquise Brown or Mark Andrews has to have a big day.
This is a big one. Let’s have some fun.