Chargers vs Ravens: Rivers leads Chargers into Baltimore in opening round of NFL playoffs
Chargers vs Ravens NFL odds spreads and predictions
When is it? Sunday January 6th
What time is kick off? 1:05 p.m. ET
Where is it being played? M&T Bank Stadium
Which channel is it on? CBS
The Los Angeles Chargers will try to avenge their Week 16 loss to the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday afternoon in the first round of the NFL playoffs.
After a disappointing 22-10 home loss to the Baltimore Ravens, the Chargers rebounded last Sunday by beating the Denver Broncos, 23-9, on the road.
Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers completed 14-of-24 passes for only 176 passing yards with one touchdown and two interceptions in the victory. Despite the average performance, the Chargers will have to ride their veteran signal caller if they want to make a deep run in the playoffs.
The Chargers finished with a 12-4 record in the regular season, and behind Rivers, the Chargers were sixth in the NFL averaging 26.8 points per game and they were 11th in total yards, as they averaged 372.6 yards per game.
Running back Melvin Gordon, who had 12 carries for 41 rushing yards and a touchdown in the first meeting against the Ravens, will look to have a better game against Baltimore this time around.
The Chargers are 8-2 against the spread in their last 10 road games.
The Ravens had a big scare before finally clinching a playoff spot in Week 17.
Baltimore came away with a 26-24 victory over the Browns to make it to the postseason. Rookie quarterback Lamar Jackson completed 14-of-24 passes for only 179 passing yards, but he had 20 carries for 90 rushing yards and two touchdowns.
In the first meeting with the Chargers, Jackson threw for 204 yards and touchdown, and had 13 carries for 39 rushing yards.
Against the Browns last week, the Ravens went run heavy with Jackson and company piling up 296 rushing yards on 47 carries. The run-heavy approach should continue for Baltimore, which finished the regular season third in the NFL with a 48.19 rushing play percentage.
The Ravens will also rely on their defense, as they are will try to disrupt Los Angeles' passing attack just like they did in Week 16.
The Ravens have the top pass defense in the league allowing just 292.9 passing yards per game. Baltimore is 4-0 straight up in its last four home games.
Chargers vs Ravens Spread
The Baltimore Ravens are giving the Chargers 2.5 points in this matchup.
So to get to the point in this one, the Los Angeles Chargers are by far the most bet team in Wild Card weekend.
While the other three games are about even on both sides, nearly 72 percent of the public money is currently on the Chargers.
And you know what that means for me. I love going against the public, especially when it is as lopsided as this.
Roll with the Ravens minus the 2.5 points. Baltimore will win by a field goal.
Chargers vs Ravens Moneyline
If you're thinking about rolling with the Ravens you'd have to put out $150 to win a $100 bet.
A $100 bet on the Chargers would get you winnings of $130 in this one.
If you don't think the Ravens will win by a field goal or more, I'd take the Baltimore moneyline bet.
Chargers vs Ravens Over/Under
The over/under is set at 42 total points in this football game.
My final score prediction: Baltimore Ravens 20, Los Angeles Chargers 17.
Take the under in this matchup.
Where the game will be won or lost
This game is going to come down to the Chargers' offense against the Ravens' defense.
Yes, Los Angeles will need to play sound defense, and not allow Baltimore's offense to control the game running the football with Lamar Jackson and company, however, the Chargers will need to put up 20 or more points if they want to ultimately come away with the win on Sunday afternoon.
As I said above, the Chargers were sixth in the NFL averaging 26.8 points per game and they were 11th in total yards, as they averaged 372.6 yards per game. Running back Melvin Gordon will be a key part of the Chargers' success on offense because they will need to relieve pressure off of Rivers' shoulders.
Look for the key matchup between Rivers and company against the top pass defense in the NFL.