Immediately afterword of Derrick Henry’s foot injury got out, which rules him out for the regular season, at the very least, the market on Tennessee Titans’ upcoming date with the Los Angeles Rams for Sunday Night Football experienced a significant shift. Alarming, in fact.
Top sportsbooks opened with the NFL line set to 6 points, but a flurry of betting has moved the line up to Rams -8. Undoubtedly, there’s good reason to believe the Rams have the advantage at home for this primetime showdown, but to write off the Titans in such a manner seems premature. Doesn’t it?
So, Is the public overreacting? Or is it really lights out for Tennessee under the lights now that Henry is side-lined until January?
Tennessee Titans vs. Los Angeles Rams
Sunday, November 07, 2021 – 08:20 PM EST at SoFi Stadium
Henry Out, Peterson In
Derrick Henry may be out, but Tennessee’s front office hasn’t been sitting on its laurels. Instead, they’ve signed Adrian Peterson to the roster to fill the void Henry leaves behind.
Henry is a significant cog in the wheel of Tennessee’s run game that ranks fourth overall in the league. On an individual level, the start running back was on a furious pace to break the season record for total rushing yards. He’s first in the league with 937 yards and 10 touchdowns. His closest rival is Indianapolis Colts’ Johnathan Taylor at 649 yards and six touchdowns – a good 300 yards behind in second place.
It’s a shame that Henry’s impressive season was cut short. The way he was going, he could have even made the cut for MVP – the first running back since Adrian Peterson won the award 2012. It’s not without some irony that Henry’s replacement is none other than former MVP winner Peterson.
The Titans are bound to experience a period of adjustment, but it might not be as bad as the doomsday prognosticators are predicting. As far as the Rams game goes, Peterson might not play a significant role initially, but his presence will anchor the run game. There is bound to be greater onus on Tannehill and the pass game, but that’s not a terrible thing considering he has elite pass weapons.
The Titans defense isn’t too shabby, and considering it’s faced some of the best quarterbacks this season, it may well fancy its chances against Matthew Stafford and Co. The Titans held Patrick Mahomes and the high-octane Chiefs offense to three points!
Rams Acquire Von Miller
The Rams are selling out on their future for the present. They’re dishing out draft capital to bolster the team, underscoring their win-now mentality. For Matthew Stafford, it must be a surreal experience after slogging it for over a decade with an organization that didn’t know if it was coming or going.
The Rams are flying high with Stafford at the center, and with a solid 7-1 record ahead of Week 9 of the NFL, McVay’s decision to part ways with Jared Goff has been validated. Stafford’s instant chemistry with Cooper Kupp is undeniable, and the Rams offense is firing at all cylinders.
The defense is true to form, and now, with Von Miller joining their ranks, it may well be one of the best units in the league. There’s everything to like about the Rams here. And yet, this is also a tough stretch for the Rams with the Titans, followed by the Niners and Packers to close out the month of November. The Rams can’t be caught looking too far ahead in the schedule and taking it for granted that the Titans are a lesser unit now that they’re without the services of Henry.
NFL Predictions and Picks
Lookahead NFL lines had the Rams tipped as the 4-point home chalk for Sunday’s showdown with the Titans at SoFi Stadium, but the line jumped out to -6 on Monday following Henry’s season-ending injury announcement. It then jumped out by another two points as the public bet up the Rams in what can only be described as manic overreaction.
Now, the line sits on 8 points, which is a lot of points to be spotting the Titans who are 6-2 SU and ride a four-game winning streak into this primetime football showdown. One has to consider the Titans are in the value spot as a result. What’s more, bettors might want to grab the Titans at a price that would never have been on offer otherwise and one that is practically twice as high as the lookahead lines projected before last Sunday.
Yes, Henry’s injury is a big blow for Mike Vrabel’s side, but it’s not the be-all and end all of their season surely. The Titans are in fine form, riding the momentum of a three-game winning streak at the expense of heavyweights such as the Buffalo Bills and Kansas City Chiefs. Moreover, they’re flush off a 34-31 win over the Indianapolis Colts, sweeping the series with their division rival to take full control of the AFC South.
Nobody seems to be giving the Titans a chance. But they’re used to it having been written off before. The Titans are a gritty team, and a dangerous floater that can do damage. While the run game defines their offense, they’ve got enough pieces in place to continue from where they left off. The pass game has elite weapons that can’t be overlooked. While the defense isn’t too shabby either, and it can give Matthew Stafford and Co. something to think about.
Whether the Titans win or lose this game, they are the value NFL pick to cover as the 8-point underdogs’ hands down.
NFL Picks: Titans +8 (-110) with DraftKings