On Sunday, the Tennessee Titans travel to the west coast to take on a surging San Francisco 49ers team. The Titans are still in the thick of the AFC playoff hunt, but are heading in the wrong direction. They need a big win this weekend against a team who has been long eliminated from the playoffs. However, since Jimmy Garoppolo has been starting, the 49ers have been winning and look like a much more competitive team. Kickoff inside Levi’s Stadium is at 4:25 PM ET.
Since the turn of the millennium, the 49ers and Titans have squared off 3 times with Tennessee winning 2 of those games. Their last battle between each other came in 2013 and the 49ers won 31-17.
Tennessee (8-5) is 3-4 on the road this season and has lost 2 out of their last 3 road games including last weekend’s 12-7 loss at Arizona. The Titans offense has regressed big time since earlier this season and they’re in trouble. They need a win this weekend to keep their hopes alive at the AFC South division title and/or an AFC Wild Card spot. A loss this weekend could really hurt their chances with games against the Rams and Jaguars to finish the season.
The 49ers (3-10) have won 3 of their last 4 games overall and come into this contest with a 2 game winning streak. A big part of that is due to the play of Jimmy G. Surprisingly, the 49ers also come into this matchup a favorite in Vegas, which is the first time that has happened all season. San Francisco would love to play spoiler to the Titans and notch their 4th win of the season and Jimmy G. would love to take one step closer to becoming this team’s franchise QB heading into the future.
The Over/Under opened at 44.5 points and has come down to 44 total points. The Spread opened at a Pick, but has swung toward the 49ers being favored by 2 points.
Let me first start by saying that I can’t believe I’m picking the 49ers, but they have looked like the better team as of late. Last weekend, the Niners put up 416 yards against Houston and won 26-16 on the road. They were led by a great performance from Jimmy G. who threw for 334 yards, 1 TD and 1 INT. They controlled the clock for nearly 35 minutes and earned 20 first downs. It was by far their best offensive performance of the season and I can see them doing it again this weekend at home against the Titans.
Tennessee gives up 250 passing ypg and that bodes well for Jimmy G. I expect him to surpass the 250 yard mark and throw for at least 1 TD. The 49ers offense has really come alive behind their new QB and there’s no reason why it shouldn’t continue.
Defensively, the 49ers have been playing inspired football due to their offensive success. Over the last 2 games, of which they won both, the 49ers have allowed an average of 229 ypg and 15ppg. They’ve also won the time of possession battle both games and should be able to do the same this weekend against a bad Titans offense.
Last weekend, the Titans only mustered up 204 total yards on the road at Arizona and also turned the ball over 2 times. Both turnovers were by QB Marcus Mariota who has regressed badly this year. On the season, Mariota has 10 TD throws to 14 picks. Over their last 3 games, he has thrown for a high of 184 yards. In their last 3 road games, Mariota has 8 interceptions compared to just 3 TD passes. I expect him to struggle on the road against the 49ers.
The only real chance that the Titans have of winning this game is if they can run the ball on a 49ers defense that allows 121.3 ypg. But, we all know that is the game plan, so I expect San Fran to stack the box to stop the run and put pressure on Mariota for 4 quarters.
Right now, I will take Garoppolo over Mariota and the 49ers over the Titans by a score of 20-16.
The Titans are 2-4-1 ATS in their last 7 games, 1-5 ATS in their last 6 road games, and 5-16 ATS in their last 21 games against teams with a losing record. The 49ers are 4-2 ATS this season when the spread is +3 to -3 points.