Tennessee (9-7) is back in the postseason for the first time since 2017. Ryan Tannehill is 7-3 since taking over for Marcus Mariota with a passer rating of 117.5. Tannehill has had plenty of matchups against the Patriots during his time with the Dolphins, but he carries an 0-6 career record at Gillette Stadium with five touchdowns and 10 interceptions. Derrick Henry led the league in rushing with 1,540 yards and 18 touchdowns. A.J. Brown had a breakout rookie campaign at wide receiver, hauling in 52 passes for 1,051 yards and eight touchdowns. The Titans defense has been susceptible at times this season against the pass allowing 255 yards per game.
New England (12-4) is back in the postseason for an 11th consecutive season as they are vying for a 4th straight appearance in the Super Bowl. The Patriots title hopes took a big hit last Sunday in a 27-24 loss to the Dolphins. The loss resulted in New England getting knocked down to the No. 3 seed and failing to earn a bye for just the 4th time in 17 postseason trips dating back to 2001. Neither of the previous three resulted in a Super Bowl berth. The Patriots are just 4-4 down the stretch after an 8-0 start. Last season’s Super Bowl MVP, Julian Edelman, had a career-year with 1,117 receiving yards but has been limited to just 10 catches for 107 yards over the last three games while dealing with injuries. Sony Michel averaged 86.3 yards rushing this season but has also been dealing with injuries. The Patriots defense surrendered a league-low 14.1 points per game. New England lost every game in which they allowed 23 points or more this season.
We break down the matchup and offer our best prop bets and analysis for Saturday’s AFC Wild Card showdown between the Titans and Patriots.
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Titans vs. Patriots Game Details
Date: Saturday, January 4
Time: 8:15 pm
Location: Gillette Stadium (Foxboro, Massachusetts)
Spread: Patriots -5.5
Analysis & Picks
Bill Belichick is known for taking away your best weapon on offense, and in this case, that’s Derrick Henry. I expect New England to corral the league’s leading rusher and force Ryan Tannehill to beat them. Take under Henry’s rushing prop of 88.5 yards on FanDuel.
PICK: Derrick Henry under 88.5 rushing yards (-108)
It’s been a breakout season for A.J. Brown, and I’ll take a stab at him here with a plus-money receiving yards prop. Yes he will be matched up against all-pro cornerback Stephen Gilmore. But this is the same Stephen Gilmore who gave up 137 receiving yards against DeVante Parker last week. Take over Brown’s modest receiving yards prop on FanDuel.
PICK: A.J. Brown over 66.5 receiving yards (+108)
Rookie wide receiver N’Keal Harry is a mismatch in this game, especially in the red zone. Considering the Patriots are devoid of talent at tight end, at 6-foot-4 and 225 pounds, Harry is the closest thing. He’s only scored two touchdowns this season, which is why the odds are so long, but I think it’s worth a small sprinkle on Harry’s anytime touchdown prop on FanDuel.
PICK: N’Keal Harry anytime touchdown (+330)
Follow Jared Smith on Twitter: @jaredleesmith