Baltimore Ravens 29, San Diego Chargers 26
The Baltimore Ravens (2-6) came out on top with a last second field goal off the foot of Justin Tucker to hand the San Diego Chargers (2-6) their fourth straight loss. Both these teams have been involved in a lot of close games this season, but it was the home team that got the job done when needed.
Philip Rivers threw for 300 yards for the fifth consecutive game, a franchise record. It’s a shame the team is 2-6 because he’s putting up an MVP caliber season to this point, shattering franchise records weekly.
He added three TD’s to his line, completing 28 of 36 passes and no picks. Two of his TD’s went to receiver Malcom Floyd.
The first TD to Floyd gave the Chargers a 13-6 lead early in the second quarter. Rivers threw up a jump ball that Floyd was able to go up over the cornerback and make the reception.
Joe Flacco and the Ravens answered back with an 11 play, 80-yard drive, capped off with a 3-yard pass to TE Crockett Gillmore. They converted on a fourth-and-one on the SD 23 yard line to extend the drive.
With still over 4 minutes left in the half, Rivers and company had time for one last drive. Converting on a number of third downs, the Chargers drove 80-yards and at the 9-yard line, Rivers found Keenan Allen in the back of the end zone for a score. It was one of the best catches I’ve seen KA13 make in his young career, going up against two defenders to make the catch. He did land hard on his back and went to the locker room. He did not play in the second half with back spasms.
— NFL (@NFL) November 1, 2015
UPDATE: Keenan Allen has a kidney injury and “will miss some time” according to Coach Mike McCoy.
Josh Lambo‘s extra point attempt was blocked by a guy who was 4 yards offsides but it wasn’t called. I’m not going to get into it here, but how can a side judge miss a guy that blatantly offsides? It’s mind boggling.
Ummm, offsides much?! pic.twitter.com/Zutx5raInG
— Annie Heilbrunn (@annieheilbrunn) November 1, 2015
Ravens tied it early in the second half with a field goal to even the score at 16, but on the Chargers’ second possession in the half, Rivers found Malcom Floyd again. He beat single coverage and with no safety back, Rivers hit him in stride for a 70-yard TD. Rivers was absolutely hammered on the play, but just got rid of the ball quick enough to make the perfect throw to Floyd. It was Floyd’s longest career TD reception, and he is now ranked 10th in franchise history with 34 TD’s.
The injury bug hit the NFL hard yesterday and it was no different in this game as players were dropping like flies. The biggest blow though came on a Flacco to Steve Smith Sr. connection in the third quarter. Smith was tackled from behind and went down in pain. He left the game and is now out for the season with a torn achilles. He’s one of toughest guys in the NFL and with talk of him retiring, it could be the last we see of Steve Smith Sr. Wish him the best in recovering.
The game changed for the worst midway through the third quarter. The Chargers’ defense had gotten a key stop and forced a punt. Jacoby Jones standing on the 20-yard line waiting for the punt decides not to field it. The ball bounces from the 20 all the way down to the 3-yard line where it is picked up, giving the Chargers terrible field position.
Fun Fact: The Chargers had three (3) punt return yards in seven games going into this one. We now have 1 punt return yard after. That’s the worst in NFL history this late in the season. Thanks Jacoby Jones.
After a quick 3 and out series and almost letting up two safeties, the Ravens got the ball back with excellent field position. Starting on the SD 38, Joe Flacco’s QB sneak gave them a 26-23 lead.
Chargers were able to get into field goal range and Josh Lambo hit a 49-yarder to tie it up with 2:27 left in the game.
On a 3rd and 19 from the SD 43, Joe Flacco threw an incomplete pass to Kamar Aiken but Steve Williams was flagged for pass interference and extended the drive. Three plays later, Justin Tucker hits a 39-yard field goal to win.
The Chargers had already been dealing with a plethora of injuries and were again hit hard. I’m just going to quote a game note from the ESPN recap page because it’s almost comical at this point. “San Diego had to play with a makeshift offensive line. LG Orlando Franklin (ankle) was inactive; LT King Dunlap limped off with an ankle problem in the first quarter and was replaced by Chris Hairston, who briefly left the game with a knee injury but returned. Center Chris Watt sustained a shoulder injury and Trevor Robinson subbed for him.”
The Chargers have always been a franchise riddled with injuries over the years, but this season is getting ridiculous. No one can stay healthy.
Philip Rivers – 28/37, 301 yards, 3 TD’s, 0 INT’s
Melvin Gordon – 18 carries, 54 yards
Malcom Floyd – 4 Rec, 92 yards, 2 TD’s
Philip Rivers is just an animal. He’s seriously so good and we have no else stepping up making plays for him.
Chicago Bears (2-5) @ San Diego Chargers (2-6) Monday Night Football
The Chicago Bears come to town for Monday Night Football showdown. Old rivals Philip Rivers and Jay Cutler get to face-off once again which might be the best reason to watch this game (possibly only). The Bears have lost two in a row, both close games, losing to the Lions in OT two weeks ago and losing to the Vikings on a last second field goal this past Sunday. Star RB Matt Forte injured his knee against the Vikings and will be out for that one.