AFC Championship Betting: Tennessee Titans The Good and the Bad
The Tennessee Titans are on the verge of completing one of the more remarkable runs in recent history. And they can get to the Super Bowl for only the second time ever. All they have to do is get by the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC Championship game.
They’ll have their chance on Sunday at 3:05 PM ET at Arrowhead Stadium. Yeah, it’s another road game. But they’ve beaten three division champions the last three weeks – on the road.
That is certainly one thing they’ve got going for them. But what else? And what might get very solidly in their way?
It’s worthwhile to take a closer look at it.
Here are the odds in that game, according to the good people at BetAnySports:
AFC Championship: Tennessee Titans vs. Kansas City Chiefs Odds
|Titans||+7 (-105)||52 (-110)||+281|
|Chiefs||-7 (-115)||52 (-110)||-350|
So what is it that the Titans have going for them?
The powerhouse running back
Derrick Henry is the only back in NFL history to rush for 180 or more yards in three straight games. And he had 188 yards against the Chiefs when these teams met on November 10. He was not just the league leader in rushing yards. He also led the NFL in yards after contact. That means you’ve got to tackle him once, and then tackle him again. And if Titans take that next step, he’ll be trouble for whoever he faces.
The efficient quarterback
Ryan Tannehill helped engineer the turnaround in Tennessee by being one of the best in so many areas. He was top of the list in the NFL efficiency rankings. He threw for more yards per attempt than anyone. By a full yard – wow. He was the best when it came to yards per attempt in play-action. he can run with the ball if need be. The team has gone 9-3 with him as the starter after winning two of their first six with Marcus Mariota behind center.
No zone like the red zone
Under Mariota, the Titans scored touchdowns on 53% of their red zone trips. Now they are over 80%, including the playoffs. With Tannehill, they’ve been like money in the bacnk.
Here are the future odds……
On each individual team to win the Super Bowl, according to BetAnySports:
Kansas City Chiefs +125
San Francisco 49ers +175
Tennessee Titans +650
Green Bay Packers +785
And what might be going against the Titans?
Oh that offensive line!
The Titans’ offensive line may open up some nice holes for Henry. But statistically they have done a subpar job in pass protection, with the worst adjusted sack rate in the NFL. That is what did Mariota in, and part of the magic of Tannehill is that he didn’t allow it to deter him. Indeed, the sack rate improved under him but not markedly so.
The other teams remaining all have pass rushes that can get after the quarterback. So while Tannehill wouldn’t be a sitting duck, he’s not altogether safe either.
Uh, the other side of that “red zone” situation
The Titans have not been able to keep opponents out of the end zone consistently when they get into the red zone. They have allowed touchdowns 68% of the time. That’s next to last in the 32-team NFL. And there isn’t a lot of spinning you can do about that.
Remember – we report, YOU decide.
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