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Ravens are underdogs in potential must-win game against Chargers

The Ravens are 4½-point road underdogs against the Los Angeles Chargers ahead of their vital Week 16 matchup Saturday, according to most Las Vegas betting lines.

The Chargers (11-3) opened as six-point favorites in some sportsbooks, but the line has come down in recent days. They are awaiting news on the potential return of starting running back Melvin Gordon (knee) and backup Austin Ekeler (neck), who missed Thursday’s win over the Kansas City Chiefs with injuries, and of No. 1 wide receiver Keenan Allen, who suffered a hip pointer during the game.

The Chargers have won four straight and the Ravens have won four of five, but only the Chargers have wrapped up a playoff berth. The Ravens (8-6) might need to win their final two regular-season games to ensure a spot in the postseason.

The Ravens will have a relatively short week of practice before heading to the West Coast, where they have struggled at times under coach John Harbaugh. According to CBS Sports, the team is 4-4 in games played in the Pacific Time Zone since 2008. But two of the Chargers’ three losses this season have come at StubHub Center, the NFL’s smallest stadium.

The Ravens lead the all-time series 6-5, though they last played in 2015, when the Chargers were still based in San Diego. Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers has played in all but the teams’ first four meetings.

The over-under for the game is 44½ points.

In other games affecting the AFC playoff picture, the Tennessee Titans are 10-point favorites over the Washington Redskins, while the Indianapolis Colts are nine-point favorites over the New York Giants. The Pittsburgh Steelers are six-point underdogs against the New Orleans Saints

jshaffer@baltsun.com

twitter.com/jonas_shaffer

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