The Baltimore Ravens’ defense lived up to the hype Saturday, keeping the Los Angeles Chargers’ offense in check in a 22-10 road victory that improved their playoff chances.
The Ravens (9-6) held the Chargers to 73 yards of total offense in the first half and 198 for the game while winning for the fifth time in their past six games.
With the Chargers driving for a potential go-ahead score with less than three minutes remaining, Ravens linebacker Patrick Onwuasor forced a fumble from Los Angeles tight end Antonio Gates, and cornerback Tavon Young returned it 62 yards for a touchdown and a 22-10 lead.
The Ravens’ turnaround from a 4-5 start to the season has coincided with a move to a run-oriented offense behind mobile rookie quarterback Lamar Jackson, but it was a 68-yard touchdown pass in the third quarter to Mark Andrews that gave Baltimore the lead for good.
Andrews’ touchdown, which gave the Ravens a 13-10 advantage, came two plays after the Chargers had taken a 10-6 lead on a 1-yard TD run by Melvin Gordon, who missed the previous three games with a knee injury.
The Ravens’ defense had four sacks on Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers and forced three turnovers, the last coming on an interception by cornerback Marlon Humphrey with 1:31 remaining. Gordon had 41 yards rushing on 12 carries, while Rivers was 23-of-37 for 181 yards.
The Chargers (11-4) saw their four-game winning streak come to an end. Los Angeles had won 10 of its last 11 games after a 1-2 start. Three of the Chargers’ four defeats have come in their temporary Los Angeles venue that is better known as the home of the Los Angeles Galaxy of MLS.
Cornerback Brandon Carr set the tone for the Ravens’ defense early with an interception on the first play of the game. The Ravens led 6-3 at halftime.
Ravens kicker Justin Tucker made three field goals, including a 56-yarder. He missed two other kicks, but one was from 65 yards that would have set an NFL record.
Jackson was 12-of-22 passing with 204 yards for the Ravens while also rushing for 39 yards. Baltimore running back Gus Edwards had 92 yards on 14 carries.
Baltimore’s defense entered leading the NFL in points and total yards allowed per game. The Ravens were third in rushing yards allowed.
—Field Level Media