Betting expert @SBJohn12 previews this week’s NFL TNF matchup and gives out his favorite bets!
Week 10 kicks off with the first round of the AFC South Title Game between the Colts of Indianapolis and the Titans of Tennessee. These are clearly the two best teams in the division, with both teams head and shoulders above the Texans and Jaguars. This is a very big game for Indy, behind by one game and already 0-1 in the division. Tennessee could take a stranglehold on first place with a win at home tonight, putting them in the pole position to win their first division title since 2008. Indianapolis has owned this matchup since division realignment and have gone 13-5 against the Titans in the last nine years. I don’t expect tonight to be that easy for them however, so let’s dive right in.
Indianapolis has had a curious season to say the least. A very sound defense, a great offensive line, and yet again, the Colts are held back by the quarterback position. Signing Philip Rivers in the offseason was always going to be a band aid, but those who watched the Chargers with any sort regularity in the last couple years could have told you that Rivers was teetering on the edge of washed. Well, washed confirmed. Probably not a great sign when you have to bring in the backup QB to toss the end of half Hail Mary on your side of the field. Defensively, the Colts have been the 2nd best defense in the league by YPP allowed. The Titans are an interesting matchup however, one of the last few teams in the league that focuses on the run first. Indy is league average on 3rd downs and red zone conversion rate, and I expect the Tennessee power running game to really make them pay as the game goes on.
The Titans have picked up right where they left off after last season’s late surge, starting off 6-2, before what’s arguably the toughest month of their season ahead. After tonight’s matchup Tennessee has Baltimore, Indy again, and then Cleveland. Not exactly a murderer’s row, but a tough stretch, nonetheless. I expect Vrabel to see this as a kitchen sink game, seizing the opportunity in front of them by any means necessary. Offensively, Tennessee has been a monster in the red zone, ranking 2nd in the league at an 80% conversion rate. The Titans are also ranked 7th in YPP and 8th in 3rd down conversions. As I mentioned earlier, I anticipate the Titans to wear the Colts down with the run as the game goes on, which will only open up Tannehill, AJ Brown, and their excellent play-action. Tennessee is banged up a bit on the offensive line, with starters Rodger Saffold and Dennis Kelly both questionable. AJ Brown is also questionable, but many anticipate him to play.
We got burned on Monday night when a Big 12 game broke out between the Patriots and Jets. Go figure I dip my toes in on an under and Joe Flacco breaks out the time machine against a Bill Belichick defense. Prognostication is hard, who would’ve thought? Tonight, I’m a little confused by the line, as I have the Titans a bit ahead of the Colts. We know there’s virtually no home-field advantage this season, but to go so far as to put Tennessee as a dog makes little sense to me. And so, we come across our first play of the season larger than a unit. Probably not too smart to do as Thursday nights are particularly strange, but the edge is too great to ignore.
Thursday Night Football Bets
Tennessee ML +102 1.5x
Season Total: 21-22-2 -0.14x