The Oakland Raiders were in the midst of a surprisingly good season but have hit a brick wall in recent weeks. Following three straight home wins over the Lions, Chargers and Bengals hopes were high as they head out on the road for a pair of games. Reality quickly set in, however, as Oakland/Vegas was thumped 34-3 by the Jets and 40-9 by the Chiefs. The Raiders are no doubt glad to return home where they’ve been very good this year but face a tough challenge in the red hot Tennessee Titans.
The Titans season was swirling down the drain at 2-4 after a 16-0 loss at Denver. During that game, Tennessee made the switch from Marcus Mariota to Ryan Tannehill at quarterback and have lost only once since. The 5-1 run has improved Tennessee’s record to 7-5 and the Titans now have a legitimate shot at a playoff berth. Even more amazing–they’re now just 1 game back of AFC South leading Houston for the top spot in the division.
With as poorly as the Raiders played in their previous two games in which they were outscored 74-12 they almost have to play better here. Assuming they haven’t thrown in the towel on the season, that is. They are 7-2 ATS in their last 9 spots at home and are 4-0 ATS as a home dog over the past three season. On the other hand, the Raiders haven’t beat a winning team this season and they’ve got a -87 point differential which is the third worst in the AFC.
A lot of people involved with the Titans have a lot to play for. Ryan Tannehill is on the verge of playing himself back into a starting quarterback gig. Head coach Mike Vrabel was reportedly on the hot seat but his status has improved immensely during the recent winning run. Running back Derrick Henry has become a featured part of the offense since Tannehill took over and he’s got 496 rushing yards in the past three games. Plus the entire team is playing for a postseason berth.
Just don’t see any ‘buy’ signs in the Raiders’ recent performances and they may have decided to ‘phone it in’ with their future in Las Vegas looming. Derek Carr has struggled of late and with the way that the Titans’ offense is clicking the Raiders can’t trade points with Tennessee. Another win for the Titans and another game ‘Over’ the total–Tennessee 6 of 6 Over since Tannehill took the quarterback reins.