The inaugural Harbaugh Bowl is in the books as the San Francisco 49ers lost 16-6 to the Baltimore Ravens in the third and final Thanksgiving game Thursday night in Baltimore.
Because of the loss by the 49ers, the Steelers can\’t gain any ground in the AFC North Sunday night against the Kansas City Chiefs, and must win just to stay a game out of first. The Ravens moved to 8-3 on the season with the win and own the head-to-head tiebreakers over the Steelers because of their season sweep.
The Ravens tied a franchise record with nine sacks of 49ers quarterback Alex Smith Thursday night and held the 49ers offense to just 214 total yards of offense. Smith finished the game with 140 yards passing on 15 completions and threw 1 interception late in the first half.
Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco was not much better statistically as he was 15 of 23 passing for 161 yards. He did have 1 second half touchdown to tight end Dennis Pitta and more importantly, no turnovers or sacks.
The biggest stat line in the game was 3rd down conversions as the Ravens converted 7 of 15 3rd downs while the 49ers converted just 2 of 12 opportunities.
The Ravens now have 5 games left on the schedule as they still have to face the Browns twice starting next week. They also have the Colts, Chargers and Bengals left on their slate. Right now the Chargers and the Bengals look like the only two games the Ravens could stumble in.
The Steelers are currently an 11 point favorite over the Chiefs heading into the weekend and it was announced earlier today that Tyler Palko will start at quarterback Sunday night instead of the recently acquired Kyle Orton.