Tennessee Titans (5-7 SU, 6-4-2 ATS) vs. Denver Broncos (10-2 SU, 7-4-1 ATS)
NFL Football Week 14
Date and Time: Sunday December 8th, 2013. 4:05PM Eastern
Where: Sports Authority Field at Mile High Denver, C.O.
by Jay, Football Handicapper, Predictem.com
Point Spread: Ten +12/DEN -12
Over/Under Total: 49
Last week the Denver Broncos scored an impressive 35-28
win in Arrowhead over the Chiefs to take sole control of the AFC West. The
victory not only completed the sweep over their division rivals but at 10-2
SU, Denver now has the best record in the AFC. With a manageable schedule
remaining, the Broncos have a chance to capture home field advantage throughout
the postseason with a solid finish over the next 4 weeks. The Broncos get
the chance to improve their fate this Sunday when they get the Tennessee
Titans at Mile High.
The 5-7 Titans have had a season highlighted by disappointment and missed opportunities. Last week the Titans were beaten for the 2nd time this year by the Colts erasing any chances of making the playoffs. Tennessee will now miss postseason action for the 5th consecutive year. Perhaps more importantly it can easily be argued that the Titans are not any better off than they were 3 years ago when head coach Mike Munchak took over which puts the direction of the franchise in question.
It is not necessarily that the Titans have not been competitive but they have just failed to win football games. Out of the 7 losses on the season, the Titans have lost 5 of those games by one score or less. Even worse is the fact the Titans have not beaten a single team over the .500 mark in their 5 wins this year as well. Those trends definitely insinuate the fact the Titans are not getting the most of their talent and they really need a strong finish over these next few weeks to secure Munchak’s job.
For the Titans to contend this week, quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick must bounce back from a poor performance against Indianapolis last week where he tossed 3 interceptions. Fitzpatrick had been rather solid before the outing against the Colts by completing 72 of 103 passes (69.9%) for 806 yards with 5 touchdowns and 0 picks in the 3 games prior. It will be important that he bounces back this Sunday against a vulnerable Denver pass defense that ranks 29th giving up 284 passing yards per game.
As everyone knows, Denver owns the top offense in the league averaging 458 total yards (1st in NFL), 336 passing yards (1st in NFL), and 38.7 points (1st in NFL) per game. Therefore the Titans are going to have to find ways to score points because Peyton Manning and the Broncos offense are likely going to get their share of points. However the Broncos defense has been suspect at times this year giving up 39 and 34 point totals in both losses. If there is a weakness to this Denver team, it lies on the defensive side of the football and to beat the Broncos you must exploit the holes in their defense.
From the betting side of the match-up this Sunday, the Broncos will be double digit favorites for the 3rd time this season as they will be laying 12 points when the Titans come to Mile High. The Broncos split those earlier games going 1-1 ATS as double digit favorites. Tennessee has been a solid team against the spread at 6-4-2 ATS on the season but they have struggled most recently dropping 4 of their last 6 games against the number. Additionally, Tennessee has fared poorly in head to head match-ups against the Broncos going just 1-5 ATS in their last 6 meetings against Denver.
Jay’s Pick to Cover the Point Spread: Despite the trends that do not have any direct relation to this Sunday’s meeting, I like the Titans from a situational standpoint. The Broncos are coming off 3 extremely tough games in a row and this is a letdown spot with a desperate Tennessee team. Also, the weather outlook for this Sunday could play a factor as well with snow showers in the forecast. If the weather plays a factor, it definitely hurts the Broncos passing game. With those factors into consideration, I like the Titans +12.