Sunday, October 18, 2020, Nissan Stadium, Nashville, Tennessee, 1 p.m. ET
Texans at Titans Betting Preview: Texans (+3.5/-115), Titans (-3.5/-105)
It was predictable that the Texans got what some call the “dead cat bounce” after firing coach/general manager Bill O’Brien. Interim coach Romeo Crennel guided the team to a 30-14 win over Jacksonville, pretty much the ideal landing spot for an 0-4 squad needing a victory.
One thing that needed to happen did. Houston emphasized running the ball a bit more often and had success with 129 yards against the Jaguars, led by 96 from David Johnson. The Texans entered that game as the league’s worst rush offense.
The other thing that happened was that Houston made the key plays defensively that it couldn’t in the first four games. There was a goal-line stand late in the third quarter that turned the game around, and the pass rush got cranking with four sacks. Can it duplicate that formula against a good team?
Perhaps it was the need to prove themselves to the experts, doubters and haters after 16 days off due to a COVID-19 outbreak. Maybe it was simply a good matchup against a Buffalo team due for a fall. Regardless, the Titans’ 42-16 blowout Tuesday night sent a message: They are really good.
Tennessee’s defense confused Bills quarterback Josh Allen with a good deal of zone coverage, coming up with two big interceptions that set up touchdowns. The offense wasn’t spectacular, but was very efficient as quarterback Ryan Tannehill had a clean game while throwing for three scores and running for a fourth.
The return of receiver A.J. Brown more than made up for the coronavirus-caused absence of Corey Davis and Adam Humphries. Brown caught seven of his nine targets and drew multiple penalties from overmatched defensive backs. He may have been the best player on the field.
Texans at Titans Betting Pick for Week 6
Two things in the Texans’ favor: Watson has had the Titans’ number for most of his career, and Tennessee has just four days to prepare for this game after looking so good on Tuesday night. Will it be physically ready for a division game against a hungry foe?
It might be close, but the Titans have displayed the ability to win narrow games. They look like a Southern-fried version of the Patriots with their versatility and willingness to do what it takes to win. Houston becomes victim No. 5.
Bills at Titans Betting Pick:
Titans 30, Texans 27.
Texans at Titans Best Bet for Week 6
Think about laying some money on the over in this one. The over has been scaled in five of the Texans’ last six games, and four of the Titans’ last five. There are big-play guys all over the field in this one.
Both defenses give up a lot of yardage, but the Titans have shown more ability to keep opponents out of the end zone. Nevertheless, the over is your safest call on Sunday.
Texans at Titans Best Bet: OVER 52.5 total points (-110)