John’s Well-Educated Guesses: Patriots vs Titans

Welcome to the rematch of the 2017 Divisional Playoffs.  When I originally saw this game on the schedule I cringed.  Nothing worse than an up-and-coming ball club looking for revenge from last year’s playoffs.  The Jaguars game from earlier this year was all the proof I needed on that.

However, now that we are here…and the Titans are 4-4….I’m a little less worried.  Is that wrong of me?

The Titans are another team that has really tried to duplicate the Patriot way.  Between them and the Texans, we have no shortage of posers in the NFL.  General Manager Jon Robinson and Coach Mike Vrabel has paid a big contract to Malcolm Butler and Dion Lewis just to try and get some of that juju.  People also forget they have Logan Ryan and Josh Kline too.

Despite their commitment to adding players from an excellent organization, it looks like Tennessee has taken a step back from last year.

Marcus Mariota has been significantly less effective this year.  Their offense as a whole has scored less than 21 points in 6 out of 8 games played so far.  Dion Lewis has less than 400 yards on the ground, although we remember well that he is a dual threat and can catch the ball too.

On Defense, Malcolm Butler has been less than excellent.  He got burned a couple times last week against Dallas on a national stage, and has some pundits asking if he is worth that big contract.  The defense has let up more than 21 points in 3 of 8 games, so they look like they are keeping the team at .500

This game is on the road for the Pats, which is one factor I am looking at.  They have not played so great away from Gilette.

That being said, let’s jump into some predictions:

Prediction:  Trouble in the red zone – The Titans are one of the best in the business at in the red area.  I think we will have to settle for a FG several times…think the Bills game from a few weeks ago.  Let’s say 3 FG attempts in the red area.

Prediction:  Stop the run – I think we can plug them up on the ground.  We will hold them to less than 100 rushing yards.

Prediction:  Pats win 31-17 – I just don’t see the Titans stopping us consistently, and their offense isn’t good enough to keep up.  Let’s put these chumps in the rear-view and get into the bye.  Time get healthy and go apple picking.