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Ravens vs Chargers Odds - Chargers barely handled Raiders, aren’t ready for Ravens

Posted by D.J. Tomkins on 9/15/2009 9:23:16 AM
NFL linesThe Ravens vs Chargers odds shape up differently than we expected before Week 1 as, not surprisingly, some new storylines have emerged already. That’s the fun of NFL betting – expecting the unexpected. Suddenly, the Baltimore offense looks potent and the Chargers barely survived the Raiders. Was last week trend or fluke?

Ravens vs Chargers Odds: Chargers -3.5 (Total: 41.5)

  • WHAT: NFL betting
  • WHEN: Sunday, September 20, 4:15 p.m. ET
  • WHERE: Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, CA
  • KEY STAT: Ravens had 501 yards of total offense in Week 1
  • PICK: Ravens +3.5; over the total of 41.5

Ravens vs Chargers odds maker breakdown: The Storyline
Both teams won their openers but did so in very different ways. The defensive juggernaut Ravens exploded offensively, dropping 38 points on Kansas City. Is their offense for real or did they simply benefit from playing the lowly Chiefs? Meanwhile, the Chargers scratched and clawed to beat Oakland in a game they were favored to win big. Were they rusty or are they primed to disappoint in 2009?

Ravens vs Chargers odds maker breakdown: Offense
The Ravens looked great last week and the Chargers looked shaky, but let’s not get carried away. Cannon-armed Joe Flacco will face much more pressure from San Diego this week and his deep threat, Mark Clayton, matches every big game with a disappearing act. The Chargers still have the superior weapons; Vincent Jackson and Antonio Gates are gigantic, athletic targets for Phillip Rivers and Darren Sproles can successfully spell the sagging LaDainian Tomlinson in the backfield.

Betting Edge: Chargers

Ravens vs Chargers odds maker breakdown: Defense
Brodie Croyle looked decent against Baltimore but the Ravens were still ferocious last week, holding K.C. to 188 yards of offense and recording three sacks. The Chargers can rush the passer decently with a healthy Shawne Merriman in the lineup but their pass defense overall leaves a little to be desired. The Ravens have a clear edge here.

Betting Edge: Ravens

Ravens vs Chargers odds maker breakdown: Special Teams
It’s all about Darren Sproles in the return game for San Diego. The super scat back wowed online betting players with 170 kick return yards, highlighted by a 66-yard return, against the Raiders. Since Nate Kaeding’s leg is reliable in cushy San Diego weather, the Chargers offer more in special teams than anything Baltimore can throw at them.

Betting Edge: Chargers

Ravens vs Chargers odds maker breakdown: Notable Injuries
Neither team has any significant injuries to report but sportsbook players should take a wait-and-see approach with LaDainian Tomlinson. He hobbled after his ineffective Monday performance and, while we’re used to seeing that from Tomlinson, we’re also getting used to seeing him struggle.

Betting Edge: Ravens

Ravens vs Chargers betting breakdown: Outlook and Pick
The Ravens look better than they probably are thanks to their cupcake Week 1 matchup. However, even if (when?) the offense comes back to Earth, the “D” should remain stellar. If San Diego just scraped by Oakland, it likely isn’t ready to handle Baltimore. Bet on the Ravens to steal one on the road.

Also consider going over the total; Brodie Croyle threw for two scores against Baltimore, so Phillip Rivers should lead the Chargers to a few majors. The Ravens’ offense is superior to an Oakland unit that scored 20 points on San Diego so it too should score a decent amount of points.

STAN’S PICK: Ravens +3.5; over the total of 41.5

For full Ravens vs Chargers odds, check out our world-renowned sportsbook. For more sports betting tips, keep reading the Betting Edge at

D.J. Tomkins is one of's NFL experts.



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