Welcome to the AFC Divisional Round betting breakdown, where I’ll provide a betting overview of the upcoming AFC Divisional Round game utilizing moneyline, points spread, and projected total odds from DraftKings Sportsbook and FanDuel Sportsbook. Additionally, I’ll hone in on at least one player or game prop each week that I feel has profit potential at one of those two sportsbooks.
All betting takes will be classified as either a “lean” or a “pick.” A lean is a wager that we have a determined degree of certainty. However, it’s one that still falls somewhere short of a high-confidence selection. A pick carries an additional degree of confidence based on a variety of factors. These include relevant injuries, the past track records for certain conditions and bet types, and team performances leading up to the game.
For more detailed information on this week’s matchup, including further game analysis, betting trends breakdown and a synopsis of the history of the line movement for the game, please see our Titans vs. Ravens Divisional Round Betting Preview over at TheLines.
Titans at Ravens moneyline
The Titans will check into this Saturday night showdown undoubtedly riding high off a monumental and potential landscape-changing road win over the Patriots in the Wild Card round seven days prior. Yet while dethroning Belichick and Brady is impressive irrespective of setting — and that much more when it’s accomplished at Gillette Stadium — it might be considered only a stepping stone when looked back on in the years to come. That’s due to Tennessee’s next opponent, a Ravens squad that looks set to claim AFC dominance not just this season, but for several more in the coming years.
As was the case against New England, the Titans will have to get through a fierce, opportunistic defense to continue their road to the Super Bowl. As good as the Patriots’ unit was — in fact, it checked out better in multiple regular-season metrics than that of the Ravens — there’s one key difference. Baltimore’s defense is complemented by the most productive offense in the NFL in terms of points per game (33.2), yards per drive (41.7), points per drive (3.1), plays per drive (6.8) and time of possession per drive (3:29). That naturally helps keep them fresher throughout all four quarters.
The Titans will undoubtedly look to lean heavily on the centerpiece of their offense, 2019 rushing champ Derrick Henry. The third-year back shook off a Pats defense that came into their game against the Titans tied with the Eagles for fewest rushing yards per home game allowed (77.2) and racked up 182 yards in a dominant performance. The Ravens yielded 101.2 rushing yards per home contest this past regular season. So, while the matchup isn’t quite as imposing on paper, it’s still a formidable one.
Tennessee will need to keep plugging away on the ground, as the outlook for Ryan Tannehill and his passing weapons is actually bleaker. The Ravens surrendered the second-lowest catch rate (58.0 percent) this season and ranked in the top 10 in yards after catch allowed (1,718). The latter figure is particularly relevant when evaluating the Titans’ offense’s chances of success — consider star rookie A.J. Brown generated 465 of his 1,051 receiving yards this season following a reception.
On the Baltimore side, likely MVP Lamar Jackson will face a Tennessee defense which allowed 251 rushing yards to quarterbacks at 4.2 yards per carry this past season. Jackson rushed for at least 60 yards in all but three games this season, so he figures to once again be a major component of the Ravens’ ground attack. Additionally, it’s worth noting primary running back Mark Ingram may not be at full health after injury his calf late in the season, and he’ll also face a Titans defense that allowed just 99.4 yards per road game (including their Wild Card win).
Conversely, Tennessee surrendered a 64.6 percent completion rate and 25 passing touchdowns this past regular season. They also slotted in the bottom half of the league in air yards (5,018) and yards after catch (1,940) allowed, making the air attack’s chances for success markedly higher.
Titans at Ravens point spread
The Titans are unsurprisingly big underdogs despite having already conquered one major obstacle in their path in the form of the Patriots. As the numbers below indicate, Tennessee was impressive against the number as a road team this past regular season and boasts a philosophy that tends to “travel” well in postseason — a run-centric offense and sound defense.
The Titans are 9-7-1 (56.3 percent) against the spread this regular season and postseason, including 6-3 (66.7 percent) as an away team.
The Ravens were 10-6 (62.5 percent) against the spread during the regular season, including 4-4 as a home team.
Tennessee has consistently surprised with its play since Tannehill took over under center and has the benefit of a coaching staff with excellent preparation and adaptive skills. Therefore, I lean toward them keeping this game close enough to slide in under the big number.
The Lean: Titans +9.5 (DraftKings Sportsbook)
Titans at Ravens over/under (total)
Partly because of their dynamic offense, the Over actually had a winning record in the Ravens’ games this season despite the defense’s ability to limit scoring. The Titans have also proven capable of putting up points in their own right. However, the caliber of each defense is such that they become even harder to crack when factoring in a postseason level of intensity.
The Over is 10-7 (58.8 percent) in the Titans’ games this season and postseason, including 5-4 (55.6 percent) in their away games.
Then, the Over was 9-7 (56.2 percent) in the Ravens’ games this season, including 4-4 in their home games.
Jackson is clearly too talented a force to be shut down for four quarters. Then, Henry has proven to be virtually matchup-proof. Therefore, both squads will score their share of points, but I see the defenses doing enough to allow the Under to hit.
The Pick: Under 47 (DraftKings Sportsbook)
Best prop bet for Titans vs. Ravens
Ravens moneyline and Under 47.5 points parlay: (+135 at DraftKings Sportsbook)
In conjunction with my belief the Ravens and the Under will prevail in this matchup, I like the looks of this prop. Baltimore forged a 7-1 mark at home in the regular season and allowed a miserly 18.6 points per contest there. Then, Tennessee boasted one of the best road defenses in the league, surrendering just 17.1 points per game when traveling (including the Wild Card Game win over the Patriots). Four of Baltimore’s seven home wins also finished under 47.5 points, while a fifth finished just over with 48 points.
ALSO CONSIDER: Home team to win by 7-12 points (+390 at DraftKings Sportsbook)
This article was originally published Tuesday. Odds subject to change.