Ravens defense bracing for expected return of Chargers running back Melvin Gordon

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Now relegated to reserve status, Flacco is nearly certain to be gone, as he carries a $26.5 million cap figure for next season.

Despite Baltimore's strong play, the Chargers still had a chance to win the game late.

Against the Los Angeles Chargers, Smith took care of business as usual. Young now has two fumble recoveries for touchdowns, two sacks, and an interception on the year in 2018. Now that game is much more comfortable than it was otherwise.

The Los Angeles Chargers beat the Chiefs in Arrowhead in the most epic fashion. That probably isn't going to happen. The team has been hot since their bye week, winning five of six games.

The Los Angeles Chargers have authored some miraculous, come-from-behind victories this season that seemed to mask a weak link. However, it doesn't mean almost as much as the product he's been putting on the field on a weekly basis.

However, with L.A. hitting the road again for the final game of the season against the Denver Broncos and likely again once the playoffs begin, the Chargers (11-4) have to figure out how to get going on offense earlier in the game. The rookie threw for more yards than Philip Rivers and showed poise in the pocket, battling back from a third-quarter deficit and avoiding any costly turnovers. He finished 12-of-23 for 204 passing yards and a touchdown. An injury to Joe Flacco paved the way for Jackson to take over at quarterback, and the Ravens promptly turned their season around by combining a sound running game with the top-ranked defense in the NFL.

But, ever the optimist, Rivers felt it was better to play poorly against the Ravens now and not with their season at stake. It is understandable how the pressure might have gotten in Rivers' head but he still missed some easy passes. All three facets of the game came through for Baltimore this week, and there were so many bright spots around the team. Keenan Allen had a questionable pass interference called on him after a big gain on second and four. Our first game ball, and hopefully a future contract extension, will be going to Za'Darius Smith. The Chargers would have been at midfield with momentum. But this game could come down to defense.

Asked on the NFL Network whether Baltimore can make a run to the Super Bowl, safety Eric Weddle said: "Anyone has a chance". The Ravens were able to run out the clock on the next drive.

Jackson tallied 68 of those career-high yards on a deep score to fellow rookie tight end Mark Andrews.

"They played their game".

There's no question there will be major changes throughout the Ravens organization next year, from the front office to the field, but the guy wearing the headset and the challenge flag won't be one of them. For all those reasons, Rivers was left to praise Baltimore's dominant pass rush and lament his own team's gaffes.

Against a team considered to be one of the most complete in the National Football League, it was the Ravens who provided that performance on both sides of the ball.