Tennessee Titans (0-0 0-0 ATS) at Denver Broncos (0-0 0-0 ATS
Killer matchup in the late Monday night game with the upstart Denver Broncos playing host to a Tennessee Titans team that made it to the AFC title game last season. The Titans are the 2.5-point road favorite in this game with a total of 41.
The line has remained the same since opening while the total has gone from 42 to 41 as of Wednesday.
Last season the Titans were staring at a record of 2-4 after a 16-0 road loss to the Broncos. It was not soon after they inserted Ryan Tannehill as the starting QB and he led them to the conference championship game. He was rewarded with a big contract and now the pressure is on.
The Broncos missed out on the playoffs last season going 7-9. However, they won four of their last five games after rookie QB Drew Lock took over and hopes are high in the Mile High City.
While the Broncos are 4-1 ATS in the last five games facing the Titans the favorite is 5-2 ATS in the last seven games between these teams.
The RB is the Real Deal
While Tannehill got a lot of press last season and in the off-season with his contract RB Derick Henry is the big gun for the Tennessee offense.
Last season Henry led the league in rushing and one of the only games he missed was he Broncos. So, Henry did not play against Denver nor dd Tannehill and Von Miller and the Denver D has their work cut out of them in this game.
Henry rushed for 1,540 yards last season with 16 TD and averaged 56.1 yards per carry. Look for the Denver was decent against the run last season giving up an average of 111.4 yards per game/. If they can keep Henry in check they will be in good shape.
Tannehill has a decent WR corps, but he cannot do I all himself. His play is crucial but if Tennessee cannot run the ball the new rich guy for the Titans must step up and can he do that? Big question for him leading a team that only ranked 21st in the NFL in passing yards per game.
The Tennessee defense only ranked 20th in the league last season and their pass rush is a big concern. The team made a big addition late in the off-season agreeing to a one-year contract with Jadeveon Clowney, who needs a big season to cash in for a big contract.
Lock It Up
The Broncos head into the season with Drew Lock at QB and they hope he can be a legit QB. Which the team has missed in many moons in Denver.
In five games last season Lock passed for 1,020 yards with seven TD and three INT. Courtland Sutton (1,111 yards 6 TD last season) returns and the team may feature two rookie WR’s in first-round pick and Biletnikoff Award winner WR Jerry Jeudy.
In the second round, Denver selected KJ Hamler, who averaged nearly 17 yards per catch in his last two seasons at Penn State.
Phillip Lindsay rushed for 1,011 yards last season and will likely split time with new addition Melvin Gordon, who looks to get back to elite RB status after a bad divorce from the L.A. Chargers.
The Denver defense was beset by injuries last season and in the off-season lost a couple of key players in CB Chris Harris and DE Derrick Wolfe, who registered 12.5 sacks last season.
The Titans have covered the spread in five of their last six games. The Broncos have covered in five of their last seven games as a home underdog.
The Broncos are an up and coming team, but the Titans have Henry and a more experienced QB. I think this game will be a close one, but the Titans will pull it out late in the Mile High City behind a strong ground game from Henry. Take Tennessee to cover in this game giving 2.5 points.
Jason’s PICK: Titans -2.5
Bettorsworld’s Pick – We will agree with Jason here. Had this game been played at the end of last season our model would have had the Titans in top 21-17. However, if we used only the last 7 games worth of data, the margin increases to 28-17.
So we’ll side with Tennessee here until Denver shows us more.
Under the total of 41 could be worth a look as these two teams figure to be strong defensively. But tread lightly with totals, especially unders, the first few weeks of the season.