It’s a matchup of AFC division leaders on Sunday in Week 9 on Sunday night when the Tennessee Titans visit the Kansas City Chiefs. Which way to lean at the best sportsbooks?
Tennessee Titans vs. Kansas City Chiefs
Sunday, November 6, 2022 – 08:20 PM EDT at GEHA Field
What You Should Know
It’s a possible AFC playoff preview on Sunday night in Week 9 as the Tennessee Titans visit the Kansas City Chiefs. I think it’s fair to say both of these teams will be playing extra football as the Titans are atop the AFC South by 2 games and the Chiefs lead the AFC West by one. The winner Sunday would have a huge head-to-head tiebreaker for a potential home field if they were to meet in the postseason. The Titans would be the AFC’s No. 2 seed as things stand and the Chiefs No. 3.
The teams played in Nashville in Week 7 last year and the Chiefs played one of their worst games of the Patrick Mahomes era in a 27-3 loss. Titans QB Ryan Tannehill threw for 270 yards and a touchdown, and he also ran for a score. It was 27-0 at halftime and marked the first time Mahomes trailed by at least 27 at halftime and the 3rd-largest halftime deficit for the Chiefs since 1991.
The Titans forced 3 turnovers (2 by Mahomes) that they turned into 10 points. Denico Autry had 2 of the Titans' 4 sacks. Mahomes ended up leaving injured on an Autry sack.
Tennessee is 5-1 against the spread on the NFL picks in the past 6 meetings.
Will Tannehill Return?
The Titans played without injured starting quarterback Ryan Tannehill on Sunday but still managed to win 17-10 at a bad Houston team. Not that rookie QB Malik Willis did much, completing just 6-for-10 for 55 yards with a pick. He wasn't asked to do much because star running back Derrick Henry was a monster with 32 carries for 219 yards and 2 scores.
It was Henry's 4th straight 200-yard game against the Texans, making him the 1st player in NFL history to have at least 150 yards and 2 touchdowns on the ground in 4 consecutive games against the same opponent. Henry now has six 200-yard games in his career, tying O.J. Simpson and Adrian Peterson for the most in NFL history.
Henry has 6 games with at least 200 rushing yards and 2 rushing touchdowns, the most such games all-time. The next closest players (Hall of Famers Jim Brown, Barry Sanders, and LaDainian Tomlinson) each had 3 such career games.
Defensively, the Titans held Houston to just 161 yards and 10 first downs, and 90 of those yards came on their final drive. Jeffery Simmons, Bud Dupree, and DeMarcus Walker all had sacks for the Titans, and Kristian Fulton had an interception. The Titans held the Texans to just 2-of-14 on third down.
Tannehill has an ankle issue and it’s too early to know if he will play this week. Safety Amani Hooker left with a shoulder injury and his status is TBA. The Titans are 4-0 ATS in their past 4 after a win.
Reid Masterful Out Of Bye
Kansas City comes off its bye week and there is simply no better coach in history off a bye than Andy Reid as evidenced by his 20-3 regular-season record dating to his days with the Philadelphia Eagles.
The Chiefs played probably their best game of the season ahead of the off week, trashing an excellent 49ers team 44-23 in Santa Clara on Oct. 23. Patrick Mahomes had his best game of the season with 423 yards passing and 3 scores. Juju Smith-Schuster caught 7 passes for 124 yards and a score. Receiver Mecole Hardman, one of the league’s fastest players, had a TD catch and 2 rushing scores.
Last week, the Chiefs traded for New York Giants' receiver Kadarius Toney, a 2021 first-round pick out of Florida who has had trouble staying healthy. He was the 4th wide receiver taken in that draft behind Ja'Marr Chase, Jaylen Waddle, and DeVonta Smith.
All those guys have been good pros. Toney hasn’t yet. He also hasn't played since Week 2, when he injured his hamstring in the Giants' win over the Carolina Panthers. Reid said the Chiefs might use Toney as a returner but otherwise wasn't specific about a role for him.
"I'm not expecting him to learn the whole offense in a day," Reid said Monday. "I think it will be a gradual process going forward, even though he is a smart kid, so I'm sure he'll pick it up relatively fast. He hasn't played for a few weeks here. So getting him back in the swing of things and the speed of it and all will be important, and then we'll just see. But he's a nice addition. I'm just not going to rush him into something that he's not comfortable with or I'm not comfortable with.''
Certainly expect the Chiefs to win here, but I think Tannehill probably does return for Tennessee and that the Titans can hang within 10 to cover at the NFL odds. Kansas City is 0-4 ATS in its past 4 at home.
NFL Pick: Titans +12.5 (-110) at BetOnline
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