Chargers at Ravens walkthrough

This is the fifth meeting between the teams. The San Diego Chargers and Baltimore Ravens are tied, with two wins each. Baltimore has won the last two meetings, 24-3 in Baltimore in 2000 and 24-10 in San Diego in 2003. The Chargers have never defeated the Ravens as a visiting team. The Chargers are looking for their fourth straight win and fifth in the last seven games following their bye week.

KICKOFF: Sunday, 1:00 ET
GAMEDATE: 10/01/06
SURFACE: Sportexe Momentum
TV: CBS, Kevin Harlan, Rich Gannon

2006 RANKINGS: Chargers: offense 3rd (2nd rush, 28th pass); defense 1st (4th rush, 1st pass). Ravens: offense 23rd (17th rush, 25th pass); defense 2nd (1st rush, 4th pass)

PREDICTION: Chargers 30-13

KEYS TO THE GAME: Who has more to prove? Chargers QB Philip Rivers makes just his second career road start, but the Ravens' three victories have come against teams with a combined 0-8 record. Field position will be at a premium with the league's top two defenses squaring off.

Ravens QB Steve McNair has been up and down while learning a new offense, but expect him to take several shots downfield with the Chargers minus SS Terrence Kiel, who was arrested on felony drug charges Tuesday. That's also pending having enough time to throw, as San Diego still wants to get an early lead and put the game on the shoulders of its aggressive front seven.

The Chargers will be at a big disadvantage if they need to rely on Rivers to win the game while coming from behind.


Chargers: With win, coach Marty Schottenheimer will pass Chuck Knox (193) for seventh on the all-time list. Have not allowed a sack this season. Ravens: Seek sixth consecutive home win -- franchise record is eight. Defense's 16 sacks is a franchise record over a three-game span.


QB Billy Volek continues to learn the offense, but it seems like the staff is leaning toward rookie Charlie Whitehurst being Philip Rivers' backup on Sunday.

WR Keenan McCardell (hamstring) is good to go Sunday.

CB Antonio Cromartie isn't going to be returning punts or kicks any time soon, coach Marty Schottenheimer said. Cromartie has been working on fielding them after practice.

LT Marcus McNeill has been named the NFL's offensive rookie of the month. McNeill hasn't allowed a sack in eight quarters.

S Bhawoh Jue (knee) is out at least a week after Tuesday's surgery.

S Terrence Kiel, a starter, will be arraigned on Tuesday on his five drug charges.


FS Ed Reed missed practice with a foot injury and is considered questionable. coach Brian Billick didn't seem too worried about his status for Sunday's game against the San Diego Chargers. "During the course of the week, you get some bumps and bruises and we listed it appropriately," Billick said. Reed would be replaced by Gerome Sapp.

FS Gerome Sapp could make his first start of the season if Ed Reed can't play with a foot injury. Reed missed Thursday's practice and is listed as questionable. The Ravens, though, don't seem concerned about the chances of Reed missing a game.

DE Terrell Suggs said he will likely be a game-time decision. He didn't practice Wednesday or Thursday but did test his right hamstring with some sprints Thursday. Asked if he thought he was questionable for Sunday, Suggs shook his head and said, "I don't think so. It just depends on how I feel come Sunday. Just because I want to play don't necessarily mean I should." He would be replaced by Jarret Johnson.

DE Jarret Johnson could make his first start of the season if Terrell Suggs can't play with a hamstring injury. Johnson would play on running downs only.

DE Dan Cody could have an impact on the Ravens' pass rush. He would be the Ravens' situational pass rusher if Terrell Suggs can't play with a hamstring injury.

DT Haloti Ngata was added to the injury report as questionable with a back injury after he was limited in practice. He is expected to start Sunday.

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