Where: Gillette Stadium, Foxboro, MA
When: Saturday, January 4, 8:15 PM. ET.
The New England Patriots will kick-off their Super Bowl defense with a Wildcard matchup with the Tennessee Titans on Saturday night.
Titans Hoping Henry Can Carry Them To The WinThe Titans are making their return to the playoffs after a one-year absence thanks to the play of Derrick Henry, who led the league in rushing this season. With Ryan Tannehill providing solid play at the quarterback position, the team will be hoping the fact that they have a passing game will open up some running lanes for Henry and help the get the win.
Tennessee had a chance to win the AFC South, but the team lost two of its last three games and had to settle for second place in the division, which means they have to face the Patriots in the playoffs for the second consecutive time. They lost by 21 points when they played New England in 2017 and will be hoping for a better result on Saturday.
Tannehill led the Titans in passing with 2,742 yards, 22 touchdowns, and six interceptions. He also had 185 rushing yards and four touchdowns. Henry finished with 1,540 rushing yards and 16 touchdowns, while A.J. Brown had 52 receptions for 1,051 yards and eight touchdowns.
The Titans gave up 20.7 points per game. They struggled down the stretch, giving up 22.3 points per game in their last six games and will need to play better if they want to beat the champs.
Patriots Need Defense To Lead Them To VictoryThe Patriots have been the premier team in the league, especially during the playoffs where they have dominated in recent years. They have played in four of the last five Super Bowls and will try to make it to their fifth Super Bowl in the last six years, but with Tom Brady in decline, they will need their defense to lead them to the promised land.
New England’s defense has been the best in the league this season, holding opponents to 14.1 points per game. They weren’t as sharp in their final five games, giving up 21.6 points per game and will need to play as they did earlier in the season if they want to pick up the win.
Offensively, the Patriots are averaging 26.1 points per game, which was seventh in the league. However, Brady struggled in the second half of the season, which is a cause for concern. The future Hall-of Famer matched a career-low 60.8 completion percentage for the season and completed less than 60 percent of his passes in eight games this year. They will need him a better performance from him if they want to get the win.
Brady finished with 4,057 yards, 24 touchdowns, and eight interceptions. Sony Michel led the team with 912 rushing yards and seven touchdowns, while Julian Edelman led the team with 100 receptions for 1,117 yards and six touchdowns.
The top supporting trends for this game, found on Oddsshark.com, are: New England is:
- 6-1 ATS in their last 7 games played in January.
- 9-3 ATS in their last 12 playoff games as a favorite.
The top supporting trends for this game, found on Oddsshark.com, are: Tennessee is:
- 1-6 ATS in their last 7 games against an opponent in the AFC East division.
- 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games against New England.