Chiefs vs. Titans Odds, NFL Picks, Predictions: Do Titans, Derrick Henry Have Enough Edge To Cover Spread?
Getty Images. Pictured: Patrick Mahomes (left) and Derrick Henry.
- It's been Derrick Henry against the world for the last few weeks, but the Titans' passing attack is back healthy.
- Can Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs keep up? Our analyst breaks down why he likes the Titans to cover this spread.
- Find his full take on the Chiefs vs. Titans odds and matchup below.
|Time||1 p.m. ET|
|Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute NFL odds here.|
In an AFC showdown on Sunday afternoon, the 4-2 Titans host the 3-3 Chiefs.
The Titans have been impressive this year — save for a surprising overtime loss to the Jets. However, that game came with star receivers A.J. Brown and Julio Jones both missing. The Titans offense is built around Derrick Henry, but it needs at least the threat of a passing attack to keep defenses honest.
Meanwhile, the Chiefs will be disappointed so far at .500. Largely held back by a struggling defense — as well as some uncharacteristically bad interceptions from Patrick Mahomes — the reigning AFC champions have relied on their explosive offense to carry the load.
This feels like a “whoever gets the ball last wins” game, with it being difficult to see either defense stopping the other team.
Click the arrow to expand injury reports
Chiefs vs. Titans Injury Report
- WR Tyreek Hill (quad): Questionable
- TE Jody Fortson (Achilles): Out
- FB Michael Burton (pectoral): Out
- OL Joe Thuney (hand): Questionable
- DT Chris Jones (hand): Questionable
- CB Charvarius Ward (quad): Questionable
- LB Anthony Hitchens (tricep): Out
- WR A.J. Brown (illness): Questionable
- WR Julio Jones (hamstring): Questionable
- WR Chester Rogers (shoulder): Out
- RB Jeremy McNichols (ankle): Questionable
- OT Taylor Lewan (concussion): Out
- LB Monty Rice (groin): Out
- OLB Bud Dupree (knee): Questionable
- DB Amani Hooker (groin): Questionable
Chiefs vs. Titans Matchup
|Chiefs Offense||DVOA Rank||Titans Defense|
|Chiefs Defense||DVOA Rank||Titans Offense|
|Football Outsiders’ DVOA measures efficiency by comparing a team’s success on every play to the league average based on situation and opponent.|
Turnovers Hurting Explosive Chiefs Offense
As noted above, the Chiefs offense has carried the team this year. They’re second in overall DVOA, per Football Outsiders, and fifth in overall scoring.
Some of their major contributors are a little banged up — Tyreek Hill returned to some form of practice on Friday after missing the first two days, and Travis Kelce exited Week 6’s matchup multiple times with lingering neck and finger issues, in addition to the continued absence of starting running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire. However, Hill and Kelce are both expected to play this week.
Turnovers have been a major issue for this offense, as Mahomes is tied for second in the league with eight interceptions through six games. The Chiefs lead the league with 14 giveaways overall.
Those turnovers put extra strain on an already poor defense. While the Chiefs and Titans are very close in DVOA rankings, taking a closer look at the numbers paints a fuller picture.
The Chiefs are one of two teams (along with the Jaguars) to boost their opponents average production by over 20%. Kansas City is equally bad against the pass and the run, which is a big problem when facing the talented trio of Brown, Jones and Henry.
Titans Passing Attack Getting Healthy
The Titans also feature one of the league’s most explosive offenses. Unlike Kansas City, though, they prefer to get it done on the ground. Derrick Henry’s 130.5 rushing yards per game is more than 26 teams are averaging.
Tennessee’s passing attack is better than the DVOA figures imply. Quarterback Ryan Tannehill has been missing one of or both Brown and Jones in three games this year, and the duo was limited for parts of the other games.
This is a very concentrated passing attack that doesn’t have much behind those two. The Titans should have no problem moving the ball against Kansas City, assuming Brown is able to recover from his bout with food poisoning.
Defensively, the Titans have struggled. They’re a bottom-five defense by DVOA, but it’s really not so bad when you dig into the numbers. Tennessee’s +9.3% impact on opposing offenses is closer to 12th-ranked San Francisco (-2.2%) than it is to the Chiefs.
The Titans have only forced five turnovers on the season, but those are caused more by the opposing offense than the defense. With Mahomes and the Chiefs playing fairly carelessly at times, we could finally see a big play or two from the Titans defense.
Tennessee also had a decent pass rush, ranking in the middle of the pack in adjusted sack rate. The Titans won’t be able to stop the Chiefs from scoring, but creating turnovers or getting to Mahomes might be enough to turn the tide of this game.
NFL Picks: Chiefs vs. Titans
Given the defensive shortcomings on both sides, I don’t see either team pulling away in this one. Five points is a fairly big spread by NFL standards, especially for a home team, so the Titans should be able to cover it.
Most books are leaving the line at 4.5, which I’d still bet, but jump on +5 if you see that.
Pick: Titans +5 | Bet to: +4.5
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