The Ravens are 2½-point favorites over the visiting Los Angeles Chargers ahead of their rematch Sunday in the wild-card round of the NFL playoffs, according to most Las Vegas betting lines.
The Ravens were four-point underdogs entering their first meeting with the Chargers, a pivotal Week 16 matchup in Carson, Calif., that they won, 22-10. All four higher-seeded teams are favored in this weekend’s slate of wild-card games.
“It’s evenly matched. I personally like the better defensive team, so my line was three, but it’s a consensus decision,” Westgate Superbook race and sports book director Jay Kornegay told the Los Angeles Times after finalizing the line Sunday. “At this stage of the season, in this matchup, I prefer the better defensive team … and there’s no comparison in the quality of the defenses. Baltimore’s is better.”
The Ravens last were favored in a playoff game on Jan. 6, 2013, an AFC wild-card-round game against the Indianapolis Colts — which was also the last playoff game they hosted. The Ravens have been underdogs in their five playoff games since, a stretch that includes their run to the Super Bowl title and two matchups in 2014, their last postseason appearance.
Lamar Jackson is set to become the youngest NFL quarterback to start a playoff game, but rookies have struggled there of late. Rookie quarterbacks are 1-5 overall and 2-4 against the spread in the playoffs since 2012, according to OddsShark.
The over-under for the game is 41½ points.