By: Logan Sella and Emily Musella
The 11-5 Tennessee Titans play host to the 11-5 Baltimore Ravens Sunday afternoon in a sure to be high scoring matchup. Ryan Tannehill and Lamar Jackson showcase their elite QB performances and dynamite offensive squads for all football fans to enjoy! Currently, the road team Ravens are 3-point favorites as Lamar Jackson will attempt to secure his first playoff win. On the flip side, Tannehill and Co. alongside head coach Mike Vrabel are ready to take on a familiar foe that has tested them this season and last year’s playoffs but ultimately the Titans plowed their way past the Birds with King Derrick Henry. Logan, Trent and I will break down our best bets on this clash of the juggernauts in the AFC.
Spread: BAL -3, TEN +3
Money Line: BAL -170, TEN +160
Kickoff: January 10th, 1:05 p.m. EST, Nissan Stadium
Emily’s Best Bet
I would anticipate the OVER to hit in this game because both the Ravens and Titans have proven all season that they can rack up over 30 points a piece. For the Ravens, the rushing duo of J.K Dobbins and Gus Edwards should power through a 21st ranked Titans run defense. Not to mention the Ravens are the best in the league this season at #1 for rushing yards per game. On the flip side, the running power of Derrick Henry is nearly unstoppable as the powerhouse has shredded teams all season with over 2,000 total yards. Through the air, Ryan Tannehill has the edge with weaponry consisting of A.J. Brown, Corey Davis, Jonnu Smith, and Cameron Batson. The juggernaut Brown is one of the best in the league in the YAC (yards after catch) category this season. As for the Ravens aerial attack, Lamar Jackson will look for Marquise “Hollywood” Brown, ol reliable Mark Andrews, and Miles Boykin. Though Baltimore’s defense is superior to the Titans defense, I believe both squads will easily put up over 30 points to secure the OVER 54.5 points in this matchup. While Tannehill is the better deep throw passer in this matchup, Lamar is the better runner. Both will use their unique set of skills on sunday afternoon for their playoff lives.
Logan’s Best Bet
Like Emily, I think that points will be no issue, which is why I have no problem laying with the road favorite and taking Baltimore -3.
Sure, Lamar Jackson hasn’t won in the playoffs yet and Derrick Henry has been stratospheric down the stretch this season, but the Ravens have been red-hot themselves. They closed the regular season by winning their last 5, only once being held under 40.
This could be a sign of things to come against a Tennessee defense that is last in QB pressure and sack percentage. They have been bad in the critical areas as well: the Titans were 30th in red-zone scoring allowed this season as well.
Despite the 0-2 record, Baltimore has had no problem moving the ball the last two times these teams have played: in their last 20 drives, they only had 3 punts.
Perhaps doubly dangerous for Tennessee is that Baltimore has started well this season, covering in 13 of 16 games in the first half. This will bode well for the Raven defense, not allowing Tannehill to hand to Henry, the league’s premier closer, late in the game if they’re behind.
This is as good a spot as any for the Ravens: They have covered 7 of their last 9 in the playoffs, and 5 in a row on the road under John Harbaugh in the postseason.
I’m on Big Truss to finally get off the schneid and get his first playoff win Sunday.