The Los Angeles Chargers did it again, a win on the road against a powerhouse offense and the league‘s No.1 defense.
Anthony Lynn might have aged a few years, his football team played themselves out of a pressure situation once more. Rookie Kicker Michael Badgley finished 5-of-6 to set a franchise record for most field goals made in a playoff game. The Chargers defense deserves the game ball, it played lights out.
Los Angeles Chargers 23, Baltimore Ravens 17
It was a game of defense, no player on either team went for over 54 yards, receiving or rushing. Badgley was on hand to convert four field goals, giving the Bolts a 12-0 halftime lead. Melvin Gordon left the field early after C.J. Mosely landed on his left knee. He returned, wearing a knee brace and would later rush into the end zone for six.
The Bolts’ defense sent Lamar Jackson into the halftime interval with plenty to ponder. The rookie looked like he had lost the confidence in his own abilities. The Ravens came back into the game. Any hopes of overturning a points deficit were put to bed when Melvin Ingram capped off a fantastic performance to recover the football and secure a Chargers’ win.
Gus Bradley‘s defense had a phenomenal day, holding Jackson to 54 yards rushing. The Ravens gave up seven sacks for a loss of 55 yards. In the third quarter, with 11:44 on the clock, Baltimore’s net passing total registered -1 yard. Take nothing away from Baltimore, they came back fighting to score 14 unanswered points.
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Ingram played smart, he broke tackles and found the gaps and finished with two sacks. Joey Bosa, Isaac Rochell, Justin Jones, Desmond King and Uchenna Nwosu each posted a sack. Rookie Derwin James deserves a mention. No.33‘s body language speaks volumes for the way he has matured. James has played here, there and everywhere.
Bradley’s defense applied pressure, forced turnovers and made Jackson‘s day one to forget. A complete contrast to that of Week 16. The decision by Bradley to play seven defensive backs paid off.
The offense did enough to win
Philip Rivers and the offense posted 20 points or more for the 16th time this season. The offensive drives weren‘t always pretty or productive, but that‘s the challenge when you play a formidable Ravens defense. Rivers was 22-of-32 with 160 passing yards. The dependable Antonio Gates finished with four catches for 35 yards.
Few gave the Bolts any chance of winning in Baltimore. Will the Chargers get the credit they deserve? Who knows, the Bolts won‘t care. It‘s been a familiar theme throughout the season. The mood in the Chargers’ camp can be summed up by a post-game tweet.
Revenge ✅ pic.twitter.com/JsdmGDBmAp
— Los Angeles Chargers (@Chargers) January 6, 2019
It’s a tough loss for the Ravens, they will be looking to bounce back next season. The Chargers move on to Foxborough to face the New England Patriots. The winners of the divisional game will play either the Indianapolis Colts or the Kansas City Chiefs. Check back on BoltBeat.com for all the build-up to Sunday’s divisional game.