The Buffalo Bills visit the Tennessee Titans in a game that’s been moved from Sunday to Tuesday (7:15 p.m. ET, CBS) due to the outbreak of positive COVID-19 tests in the Tennessee organization. The bad news is we lose the originally scheduled Thursday Night Football game between the Bills and the Kansas City Chiefs, but that game is now being moved to start a Monday night doubleheader (5 p.m. ET) before the Arizona Cardinals-Dallas Cowboys game -- and that looks great, too.
MACtion is great, but the last time the NFL gave us a gift of a Tuesday night game was nearly 10 years ago on Dec, 28, 2010, when a Philadelphia blizzard caused the delay and the Minnesota Vikings upset the Eagles 24-14 as whopping 14-point underdogs with rookie QB Joe Webb making his first pro start in place of the injured Brett Favre. Prior to that, the NFL hadn’t played a Tuesday game since Oct. 1, 1946, when the New York Giants beat the Boston Yanks 17-0 after the game was moved due to a rainstorm.
Back to this Tuesday, a national TV audience should be ready to get better acquainted with the undefeated Bills (4-0 straight-up and 3-1 against the spread) as QB Josh Allen (70.95 completion%, averaging 331.5 yards passing per game, 12 TD, only 1 INT, plus three rushing TDs) leads an offense that is averaging 30 PPG and is complemented by the rushing (and receiving) of RB Devin Singletary, free agent WR Stefon Diggs and a strong supporting cast.
The Bills’ defense hasn’t lived up to expectations (though, we all know how hard it is to defend against today’s high-powered offense with all rule changes also favoring the offenses), but it’s understandable that oddsmakers have made them the favorites. However, I think they’ve set it too high at Bills -3.5.
A lot of people are betting against the Titans because of the real-world on-and-off-the-field consequences of the COVID-19 positives tests surrounding the team The players were so desperate to keep in game shape that they held illegal workouts at a local high school. But I don’t see how these distractions are any different than the rest of us doing our jobs in the current environment (and let’s not forget that the Bills have had their daily and weekly schedules affected through no fault of their own, so all of that has to be included in our handicap of the game).
The Titans still have all the talent, including QB Ryan Tannehill, RB Derrick Henry, etc., that took them to the AFC Championship Game last season.
The Titans are also undefeated at 3-0 (though 0-3 ATS as they won but didn’t cover their three previous games on Stephen Gostkowski field goals) and I see this game also being close and coming down to a field goal, so that 3.5 could come in handy.
Pick: Titans 3.5