NFL Free Picks for
Posted at 12:10 PM EST
8:30 PM EST. The AFC South is considered the worst division in football and after sending nine-win teams to the playoffs the last two seasons, it is a hard point to argue against. Even when the Colts were winning 10 and 11 games their record was padded with wins that came on the backs of their weak division opponents. With Andrew Luck and Peyton Manning before him, the Colts have had the best quarterback in the division for over a decade and it hasn’t been close but with the former still sidelined with a surgically repaired shoulder, this franchise has been exposed as a one-trick pony. While Indy is 2-3 through five weeks, the goods under the hood show that they are probably fortunate to have the two wins they do have, as they rank near the bottom of the league in total DVOA (a relevant metric that measures defense-adjusted value over average) at -48.8% just 0.03% above the winless Browns. The weak offensive line, which has been an issue for years and is a big reason why the franchise QB is on the bench, has been awful again this season, as Colts QBs have been sacked 18 times with an adjusted sack rate of 9.8% which give sacks (plus intentional grounding penalties) per pass attempt adjusted for down, distance and opponent. The bottom line is that the Colts shouldn’t be winning football games.
Quarterback Marcus Mariota will return under center having missed one game with a hamstring injury and while the media and market are obsessing over how injured he is coming into this game, we couldn’t care less. Whether or not Mariota will finish the game has been factored into this line and oddsmakers still had no problem making the Titans an 8-point favorite. Also important factor to consider is that Pinnacle, the sharpest book in town, opened at -8 while many other outfits posted -7. Mariota should be a welcome addition, as he ranks seventh in total Quarterback DVOA at 19.8% almost 5% higher than Carson Wentz who is 8th. For years the Colts have had the upper hand at quarterback in this series but with Luck out, the tables have turned.
Next up is those utterly useless trends that people use to make selections. It is well documented that Indy has dominated this series by beating them every time since 2011 when Matt Hasselbeck was still Tennessee’s quarterback. The Titans have got to be sick of losing to the Colts and tonight is their opportunity to take one back in prime time in front of the football world. Yesterday, favorite bettors were crushed by large favorites with a pair of 13-point dogs winning outright (Dolphins, Giants) and double-digit favs like New England and Washington failing to cover. Hell, a bunch of smaller pooches like the Bears, Rams and Chargers had little trouble covering so we can understand the reluctance of laying large lumber. However, the Colts are getting far too much credit for competing against the Seahawks (that game was tied 18-18 late in the third) and having two wins already but the two victories were against the Brownies and 49ers, both by a FG. Thus, the Colts could easily be 0-5. Indy’s three losses have been by an average of 21 points. This is a mismatch any way you slice it and the price is too low. The Titans have pointed towards this game as the game that would really define the progress of this regime and change the guard in the division. The improvement is evident and now the Titans are ready to snap a 10-game series losing streak against a Colts’ quad that's struggling in all three phases and that can’t match up.
Open an account today at Pinnacle Sports and take advantage of their -104 style pricing on sides and totals, which is 60% better than other sportsbooks.
TENNESSEE -7 +102 (Risking 2 units - To Win: 2.04)
NFL Historical - Totals
|Last 30 Days||18||11||0.00||+15.94|
|Season to Date||26||17||0.00||+21.32|