Sunday Snapshot
C Nick Hardwick (Donald Miralle/Getty)
C Nick Hardwick (Donald Miralle/Getty)

Posted Nov 23, 2007


When the Chargers and Ravens met last season, it was a clash of two of the league's elite teams. In the 2007 rematch, both teams are battling on the brink and desperate for a win.

KICKOFF: Sunday, 4:15 ET
GAMEDATE: 11/25/07
SURFACE: Grass
TV: CBS, Dick Enberg, Randy Cross

SERIES: 6th meeting. Ravens lead series, 3-2. The Ravens have won the past three meetings after losing the first two. In their previous matchup (October 2006), the Ravens edged past the Chargers 16-13 in Baltimore. Ravens tight end Todd Heap bounced off a Shawne Merriman hit and scored a touchdown with 34 seconds remaining to pull off the victory.

PREDICTION: Chargers 24-20

KEYS TO THE GAME:

The Ravens are on pace to commit a franchise-record 41 turnovers this season. They have a minus-9 turnover margin and are last in the league with a 32.1 red zone touchdown percentage (nine TDs in 28 possessions). It all should equal up to a heavier emphasis on RB Willis McGahee. QB Kyle Boller also admitted he needs to hit his hot routes to help an o-line struggling with protection.

Time for Rivers to step up: Tomlinson wants more carries, especially toward the edges. But he could find the going tough once again with the Ravens having not allowed a 100-yard rusher in a league-high 13 straight games. San Diego desperately needs QB Philip Rivers, who has a league-leading 17 turnovers, to find his form from last season. The good news is it appears he and WR Chris Chambers are finally developing some chemistry.

KEY INJURIES:

Ravens: DE Trevor Pryce (torn pectoral muscle) was placed on Injured Reserve this week; QB Steve McNair (shoulder) is out; TE Todd Heap (hamstring) could be a game-time decision.

Chargers: C Nick Hardwick (foot) is out at least one more game; DE Luis Castillo (ankle) is out four more games, while backup Jacques Cesaire (toe) is limiting his practice reps to save himself for the game.

FAST FACTS: McGahee has a rushing touchdown in each of his past five games. ... Tomlinson needs 29 rushing yards to reach 10,000 for his career.

PERSONNEL NEWS:

Ravens:

--RT Adam Terry could be benched after starting eight games this season. There has been talk that he might be replaced by rookie third-round pick Marshal Yanda.

--TE Todd Heap has not practiced and isn't expected to play because of a hamstring injury. There is a chance that he might not play again this season.

--CB Chris McAlister has not practiced all week with a right knee strain but he is expected to start.

--WR Devard Darling will be the Ravens' No. 3 receiver because Demetrius Williams is out. Darling is coming off a career game, when he caught four passes for 107 yards and a touchdown.

Chargers:

--Pro Bowl C Nick Hardwick (foot) has increased his practice time and went the entire workout on Thursday. He's probably a week away, although he might be able to go Sunday.

--DT Jamal Williams worked, after his customary Wednesday practice off to save his knees.

--LB Carlos Polk (shoulder) going to IR is a blow to the special teams. He gave the unit a big-time attitude and led it with 12 tackles.

--DE Luis Castillo (ankle) is encouraged with this rehabilitation and hopes to return for the final two games.

--WR Chris Chambers could have a big day if the Ravens' solid run defense doesn't bend. Chambers had his top showing as a Charger after catching four passes for 93 yards on Sunday.

--RB LaDainian Tomlinson has gone four straight games without reaching 100 yards rushing and is facing a Ravens defense which allows but 78 rushing yards per game.



Related Stories
Camping Trip
 -by SDBoltReport.com  Nov 23, 2007
Chargers-Ravens Game-day Primer
 -by SDBoltReport.com  Nov 23, 2007
Bolts, Ravens Face Tough Questions
 -by SDBoltReport.com  Nov 22, 2007

PREMIUM SUBSCRIPTION INCLUDES
> Members-only Forums
> Insider Information
> Free Agency &
   Draft News
> Expert Chats

Sign Up Today!

Free Email Newsletter
Don't miss any news or features from SDBoltReport.com. Subscribe to our newsletter to have our newest articles emailed to you on a daily or weekly basis.
Click here for a list of all Team Newsletters.

Add Players to My HotList
Get free email alerts with news about your favorite players. Click name to add to My HotList.
DE Luis Castillo (profile)
DE Jacques Cesaire (profile)
WR Chris Chambers (profile)
C Nick Hardwick (profile)
OLB Shawne Merriman (profile)
QB Philip Rivers (profile)
RB LaDainian Tomlinson (profile)
DT Jamal Williams (profile)
[View My HotList]