NFL Picks: Back Ravens -3 Against a Reeling Chargers Team

Joe Gavazzi

Saturday, October 31, 2015 5:15 PM GMT

Saturday, Oct. 31, 2015 5:15 PM GMT

Baltimore hosts San Diego this Sunday. We're backing the Ravens -3 for our Crusher of the Week NFL pick against the Chargers. Go inside this article to find out why.

San Diego Chargers vs. Baltimore Ravens (-3) 1:00 EST
The San Diego Chargers travel west to east for a 10 AM body start against the Baltimore Ravens. This is the fourth time in 8 weeks that the Chargers have traveled at least two time zones east, with losses coming to Cincinnati by 5, Minnesota by 17, and Green Bay by 7. None of those losses get the money for Chargers backers. Baltimore, of course, has their own scheduling crunch, as they returned from MNF at Arizona to play at home on this short week.

The similarities do not end with the traveling issues for these teams. Both the Chargers and Ravens enter tonight on three game losing streaks. They are a combined 3-11 SU ATS between them, far from preseason projections which saw each of them slated to win 8 or 9 games this season. From a line value perspective, that has more negatively impacted the Baltimore Ravens, who are favored by no more than their home field in this encounter. While the Ravens have taken the more precipitous drop from their playoff season of 11-7 last year to 1-6 SU this year, it is the Chargers whose down turn has been happening for a longer time.

The 1-6 ATS season for San Diego is part of a longer nose dive, which has seen the Chargers go 4-14 ATS. Last week, they fell behind Oakland 37-6, a result that was predicted in the analysis of the game on these pages last week. Their lone offense comes through the air with a well-constructed passing game led by QB Philip Rivers. The running game and defense have taken a major hit. The Chargers are allowing 28 PPG on 6.7 YP play, the worst number in the NFL. When you combine that with a ground game that is being outrushed 132/5.3 to 87/3.7, you can see why it is easy to see why San Diego will get handled at the point of attack, much like they were last week when the Raiders outrushed them 130-90.

Baltimore has been through a meat grinder of a schedule in the first half of the season. Last week on MNF, playing their fourth game in 7 weeks out west, they trailed Arizona 28-10 mid fourth quarter. They could have tossed the towel easily knowing they were headed for a sixth loss. Yet they played until the very end, having the ball in the closing minute with a chance to tie. At last, they return home to a field where they are 26-13 ATS as home chalk in non-division games. There are a lot of frustrations built up on this squad. San Diego may be in the wrong place on the wrong Sunday. With the NFL odds in our favor, I invite you to join me this Sunday for my NFL pick on the Baltimore Ravens as the NFL Crusher of the Week.

NFL Picks: Ravens -3 at Bovada

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