Coming into the wild card weekend, the Tennessee Titans are both 3-5 straight up and against the spread, while at home the Kansas City Chiefs also have equal SU and ATS records, but theirs looks better at 6-2. The Chiefs opened up as 7-point favorites but were bet up to 8-points after early action from sharps and the public caused the spread to rise. However, Mariota showed what he’s capable of when he clinched a playoff berth in a win against the Jaguars in Week 17, where he effectively provided the blueprint for the Titans to pull off a postseason upset against KC. Can he show his previous Heisman form again this Saturday?
Betting Preview for the Tennessee Titans vs Kansas City Chiefs NFL Wild Card Round 2018 Game on January 6 2018
Where: Arrowhead Stadium, Kansas City
When: January 6 2018, 4:35 PM EST
Line: Tennessee Titans (+8) vs Kansas City Chiefs (-8) – view all 2018 NFL lines
TV Broadcast: ESPN
Betting on the Tennessee Titans (9-7)
The Tennessee Titans are heading into this game with a 9-7 straight up and 8-7-1 against the spread record. Mariota and company had a rough back half of the season, losing three straight but pulling off a win against the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 17 to clinch a wild-card spot. It was Mariota in the end, who threw for a TD and led his squad with 60 yards rushing. Succor supported the cause with three field goals while running back DeMarco Murray missed the game with an injury. The verdict is still out on whether or not Murray will play this Saturday so refer to the NFL odds on this game as the day approaches.
Coming into this important meeting with Kansas City, the Titans will have to swallow the fact that they have one of the most conservative offences in the league and let Mariota manage the game while looking to run the ball as much as possible.
Betting on the Kansas City Chiefs (10-6)
The Kansas City Chiefs are entering wild card weekend with a 10-6 straight up and against the spread record. They have certainly been even more schizophrenic than the Titans (well, Mariota) this season. The Chiefs started off with a 5-0 run which may have set expectations too high, expectations that may have resulted in pressure that they could not handle, going six of seven right after the winning streak.
But things picked up again, with Kansas City closing out the regular season with four wins in a row, including a win against Denver in Week 17 that saw Coach Andy Reid rest many of his starters. Rookie running back Kareem Hunt stayed in the game long enough to pull in a single carry for 35 yards and a touchdown which sealed the NFL rushing title with a grand total of 1,327 yards on the season. That distinction also made Hunt the second non-first-round rookie to win a rushing title in five decades. Quarterback Alex Smith sat out in Week 17, resting cozy with his league leading 104.7 QB rating. Many expect Smith to be traded in the offseason, so he will be playing to prove his value in the playoffs, especially since he is unsure if he will be playing in them again in the 2018-19 season.
Marcus Mariota is a man on a live-or-die mission. If he performs in the playoffs, beginning here with a win against the Chiefs, he will have redeemed himself. If he doesn’t, his starting position may be in jeopardy. The Hawaiian stallion will have his defining moment here on Saturday and lift the Titans against the Chiefs who have next season transition (Patrick Mahomet is coming) on the mind. There is some money to be made on this one folks. Pick: Titans (+8)
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