Here they are again. LA is back in the postseason. Philip Rivers had a terrific season to lead his team here, and now they want to make some noise. They face a Baltimore team who beat them at home two short weeks ago.
Baltimore, on the other hand, makes their first playoff trip in four years. In the Flacco era, they never lost in their first playoff game. We shall see if Lamar Jackson can keep that trend going for Coach Harbaugh.
They have the #6 scoring defense in the league and rank #8 in points against. This is a group of players that possess a lot of talent and ability to make big plays at any time. Believe it or not, they went 7-1 on the road during the regular season, with the only loss coming to the Rams on Sep. 23. Melvin Gordon was very good when healthy this year, especially as a receiver, with 50 receptions on 66 targets, totaling 490 yards and four touchdowns. He is healthy and will be a threat.
Keenan Allen is leading a very impressive group of wideouts, and they will need him to have a big day. On D, if Joey Bosa can pressure Lamar Jackson from the outset while Melvin Ingram and Derwin James do their thing, they will be in striking distance. This is a very well-coached team, as Anthony Lynn looks to help Philip Rivers write a new chapter for his legacy memoir.
The #2 defense in the league in points against, Baltimore really did it all on that side of the ball. This was made easier when Lamar Jackson took over, and they become a team running the ball over 60% of the time. They have had a historically great run game since Lamar took over as starter seven weeks ago. He, Gus Edwards, and Kenneth Dixon are all sensational on the ground and continue to pile up positive gains. The receivers have come to realize that the best thing they can do for Lamar and co. is just block, block, and block some more. The more big runs they pile up, the more opportunities for big passing plays.
They have a pass-rush which sacked Marcus Mariota 12 times but had an average of two sacks per game in their other 15. They put pressure on, but a lot of the time, cannot finish. They had three players with at least 10 TFL during the season, and still possess the most clutch kicker in the game with Justin Tucker. He can kick them out of ALMOST any situation.
Ravens win a close one, knock off LA
Riding with Baltimore -2.5! They are off to the Divisional Round for a date with the Patriots. Lamar Jackson’s playoff debut will see him pass for 150 yards, run for 175, and both pass and run for a touchdown.
Free Pick: Ravens
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