The Chargers’ defense kept Baltimore out of the end zone on two fourth quarter drives Sunday and
Playing without three starters as well as defensive tackle
“We came into this game with one thought: to win the game,” Turner said. “We did some good things, but we didn’t get that done. We have some errors we have to eliminate.”
The Chargers jumped on the board first as Rivers hit Sproles for an 81-yard touchdown, Rivers’ longest pass of his career and Sproles’ longest play from scrimmage, to put San Diego up 7-0 midway through the first quarter.
“It seems like every time we need him to make a play he does,” Turner said of Sproles, who caught seven passes for 124 yards Sunday.
Of Baltimore’s 311 yards Sunday, their running backs accounted for 199 of them. Willis McGahee, Ray Rice and LaRon McClain combined for all 68 yards the Ravens gained on their first scoring drive of the afternoon, including a five-yard run by McGahee that tied it at 7-7.
“It was kind of like last week where they were able to establish the run early and then we slowed them down in the second half,” linebacker
San Diego used a 45-yard catch by
The Chargers outgained the Ravens 474 to 311 Sunday afternoon, but San Diego was forced to rely on Kaeding too much. They failed to score touchdowns on four trips to the red zone, including two second-quarter drives. Their red zone struggles, combined with a touchdown catch by Baltimore’s Kelly Washington, left the Chargers down 21-16 at halftime.
“When we get down there, we’ve got to find a way to finish drives,” said tight end
The Ravens extended their lead to 28-16 on a Todd Heap touchdown catch in the third-quarter. Then San Diego stormed back. Rivers tossed a 35-yard touchdown pass to
“I timed it pretty good,” Merriman said. “Sometimes you have to go out there and try to make a play and hope for the best.”
Rivers and company marched all the way to Baltimore’s seven yard line but again had to settle for three points as Kaeding tied his career high with his fourth field goal of the afternoon.
Thanks in part to a tackle for loss by
Still, the Chargers had hope after another timely stop by their defense. Although Baltimore took over at San Diego’s 13 following the interception, a tackle for loss by Stephen Cooper and a sack by
A 38-yard pass from Rivers to Jackson got the Chargers into Ravens territory. Then Rivers threw incomplete on third down and Lewis shot through a gap untouched on fourth down to preserve the win for Baltimore.
The loss came on a day when the Chargers played without three starters – running back
Turner scoffed when asked about “moral victories,” saying he’s not into using those words, but he does hope that many of his young players will grow from their experiences Sunday and in turn that will benefit the Chargers down the road.
“From everything we went through last week, I thought our guys handled most of the things extremely well,” Turner said. “Obviously there were some situations on both sides of ball where we didn’t handle them as well as we need to. I believe with the young guys we put inside there, as we continue through we’ll respond to those things.”