The LA Chargers go on the road to face the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday, despite having a better regular season record. The Chargers went 12-4 through the season, while the Ravens went 10-6, although all of that goes out of the window now we are in the post season.
Those who want to look at recent meetings between the two teams don’t need to go far back to find one between these two. These teams met in week 16, although that game was in LA. The Ravens came out on top in it, and that should give them a psychological advantage over their opponents, that game will be fresh in the memory of every player on the field this Sunday.
If you want a story to look at for the weekend, then look no further than Ravens’ quarterback Lamar Jackson, who will become the youngest quarterback to start a playoff game in the NFL. He is just 21 years old and turns 22 on Monday so he will be looking to celebrate that by ensuring his team is still in the playoffs.
His rushing has completely changed the Ravens offensively, and since taking over he has led them to a 6-1 record. His worst rushing game came against the Chargers two weeks ago, they held him to just 39 yards that day and will need to do the same again. He will have learnt from that though and should have a few new plays up his sleeve to deceive the opposing defenders.
Facing Jackson is one of the most experienced quarterbacks in the NFL today in Philip Rivers. He will try to show that there is life in him still by leading the Chargers to a deep playoff run. The team have looked at drafting a young quarterback and may do so this summer, Rivers knows he will have to be at the top of his game to keep his job and he is the kind of professional to thrive on that.
This one is a closely matched game between two very solid teams. Lamar Jackson led his team to a win over the Chargers two weeks ago, and he has won six of his last seven starts. I think he can add another here, and I am backing the Ravens to make home-field advantage count and get the better of the Chargers in this one. It will be close, but the Ravens are my pick to reach next weekend’s divisional round.