In a defensive battle, the Chargers prevailed against the Ravens in an AFC Wild Card game Sunday.
Baltimore made it a close game in the end, pulling within six points with less than two minutes remaining, but a Lamar Jackson fumble with 19 seconds left in the game and sealed the Ravens’ fate.
Here are three takeaways from the Chargers’ 23-17 win over the Ravens.
Lamar Jackson falls short
Jackson’s performance for the first three quarters was so rough that fans at the game were calling for Joe Flacco to replace him. Jackson gained some momentum in the middle of the fourth quarter with two touchdown passes to Michael Crabtree, but it was too little, too late for Baltimore to rally.
Jackson finished the game with 194 passing yards with two touchdowns, one interception and three fumbles, one of which was lost. He was also sacked seven times and the team as a whole lost three fumbles, showing the Ravens were playing poorly all around.
In comparison, Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers quietly finished the game with 150 passing yards, no interceptions and no touchdowns.
Defense, Defense, Defense
Both defenses were in high gear Sunday afternoon. In the first half, the Chargers held the Ravens to just 69 yards of total offense, which is the lowest by a team in playoff history.
The Ravens had only 11 first downs, while the Chargers faired a little better with 14 first downs. The Ravens had just 229 total offensive yards, while the Chargers had 243. Both teams’ third down efficiency was less than 36 percent, but they were both 100 percent on fourth downs.
The first touchdown of the game wasn’t scored until the fourth quarter.
Field goals do win games
Chargers kicker Michael Bagley was the sole scorer in the first half of the game with four field goals. Even though his fifth field goal attempt was blocked in the third quarter, Bagley still scored the most points in the game.
Chargers kicker Michael Badgley’s 53-yard FG is the 2nd-longest in Chargers postseason history.
From 2016-18, the Chargers were 2-for-9 (22%) in the regular season on FG attempts of 50+ yards, the fewest makes and worst percentage on such kicks in the NFL.
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) January 6, 2019
Bagley finished the game with five field goals, a Chargers postseason record, and paved the way for Los Angeles’ win.
Unfortunately for Ravens kicker Justin Tucker, who is known for his accuracy, his missed field goal didn’t help the Ravens situation.
The Chargers will head to New England next Sunday at 1:05 p.m ET to face the Patriots.