The Baltimore Ravens held off the Los Angeles Chargers in a surprisingly low-scoring game, 20-10, to improve to 9-3 on the season.
The Chargers, losers of three straight, are now 4-7 on the year.
A rare Justin Tucker missed field goal with 3:02 left in the fourth quarter gave Justin Herbert and the Chargers’ offense life. However, they’ve been in this position before this season, and unfortunately, it hasn’t worked out in their favor much.
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The Chargers’ offense couldn’t generate more than 10 yards of offense with the ball in prime position at the Ravens’ 46-yard on third-and-6. But they couldn’t pick up the necessary yardage for a first down, turning it over to the Ravens.
To make matters worse, rookie receiver Zay Flowers scored his second touchdown of the game, a 37-yard run to make it a 20-10 game.
Flowers was the only Raven to find the end zone, scoring the game’s first touchdown of the game on a play-action pass from Lamar Jackson. Flowers finished with five catches for 25 yards to go along with his big rush.
The run game was where the Ravens thrived yet again this season, picking up a team total of 197 yards compared to the Chargers’ 86.
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It was Keaton Mitchell leading the way with 64 yards on nine carries, though Lamar Jackson (39), Justice Hill (31) and Gus Edwards (26) contributed as well.
For the Chargers, turnovers were a major problem all game long.
The team’s first drive went 54 yards in 12 plays resulting in a field goal. From there, though, Herbert and the Chargers couldn’t get out of their own ways.
After two punts, veteran receiver Keenan Allen fumbled on the Chargers’ 36-yard line, which was recovered by the Ravens, who kicked a field goal with their good field position.
On the very next drive, Herbert found Austin Ekeler for a short pass, but he also fumbled, and the Ravens fell on it with less than two minutes in the half.
Though Baltimore turned it over on downs four plays later, the Chargers weren’t able to secure more points on a Herbert Hail Mary that ended in an interception.
The biggest backbreaker for the Chargers, though, came on its second drive of the second half, where they went 19 plays and 61 yards downfield in a 13-3 game and couldn’t come away with any points.
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Once again, a turnover was the problem.
This time, Herbert was strip sacked by Jadeveon Clowney, who recovered the fumble on third-and-14. Things might’ve turned out different for Los Angeles if they could’ve come away with points on that drive, as Gerald Everett found the end zone to make it 13-10 midway through the fourth quarter.
Instead, the Chargers fell to one of the best defenses in the NFL, and remain on the outside looking into the AFC playoff race.
Allen finished as Herbert’s top target with 106 yards on 14 catches, while Ekeler had 32 yards receiving, though only 32 yards rushing.
The Ravens will head to their bye week sitting in firm position in the AFC North lead, while preparing for the Los Angeles Rams at home on Dec. 10.
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Meanwhile, the Chargers head to New England for their next matchup against the reeling Patriots.