Baltimore Ravens (11-5 10-6 ATS) at Tennessee Titans (11-5 7-9 ATS)
The Ravens are hot and they look to stay that way in the Wild Card game heading to Music City to face the Tennessee Titans. Even though the Titans are at home and AFC South winners they are a 3-point underdog in this game with a total sitting at 55.
The public has slightly backed the Titans in this playoff game, as they opened as a 3.5-point underdog and are a 3-point dog as of Wednesday.
This is a rematch of a playoff game last season where the Titans beat the Ravens in Baltimore. Reigning MVP Lamar Jackson did not put up the numbers he did last season but ended well and looks for his first playoff win.
The Ravens ended the season winning their last five games and in the season finale they laid a 38-3 beat down on the Cincinnati Bengals.
The Titans have won three of their last four games and while they have MVP candidate RB Derrick Henry the defense has been suspect. The team has given up 40 points and 38 points, respectively, in their last two games and will face a Baltimore offense that ranks seventh in the league in points per game.
Not only did these teams meet in the playoffs last season but met this season in Baltimore where the Titans beat the Ravens 30-24 in OT.
The Titans are 7-3-1 ATS in their last 11 games against the Ravens
Hot But Not Facing the Best
While the Ravens ended the season on a five game win streak only one of those wins came facing a team that is in the playoffs.
Jackson passed for 8 TD and 2 INT in his last three games and in the last two rushed for 97 yards and 80 yards respectively. While he passed for 365 yards and rushed for 143 yards in the playoff loss to the Titans last season he was picked off twice and was picked once in the loss to Tennessee this season.
Jackson led the Ravens with 1,005 yards and the RB duo of J.K. Dobbins and Gus Edwards combined for 1,528 yards. Baltimore’s main targets are WR Marquise Brown (769 yards 8 TD) and TE Mark Andrews (701 yards 7 TD).
Tennessee’s defense did not look good to end the season and while they may give up a lot of yards it is key they force turnover like they did against the Ravens in the playoffs last season.
The 2,000-yard club
In the Titans’ last game they beat the Houston Texans 41-38 where Henry rushed for 250 yards and became only the eighth RB in NFL history to surpass 2,000 yards. He has rushed for over 200 yards in two of the last three games and rushed for 133 yards in the OT win over the Ravens earlier this season.
Ryan Tannehill was solid this season under center and finished with the fourth highest QBR. In the last four games of the season he passed for six TD and no INT in the three wins in that span but only one TD and two INT in the one loss.
A.J. Brown led the Titans with 1,075 yards with 11 TD and in the season finale win over Houston he had 151 yards and a TD.
Baltimore’s defense ranked second in the league only giving up an average of 18.9 ppg and in their last three games only gave up an average of 10 ppg.
The Ravens have covered the spread in their last six games while the Titans failed to cover in their last two games.
I look for Jackson and Henry to have big games on Sunday but for Jackson to have the edge since he will avoid the turnover. Both teams will rack up the yards on the ground and while I see a close game Baltimore will come through and get the W and also cover the spread giving 3 points.
PICK: Ravens -3