NFL

MNF Preview – Brilliant Buffalo Bills Set For Titanic Tennessee Test?

For many people, the Buffalo Bills (4-1) are the best team in the NFL right now. After their slow start against the Pittsburgh Steelers, the Bills have won four games in a row, in two of them holding their opponents to a shutout.

Tonight they make a trip south to Nashville to take on the Tennessee Titans (3-2), who have won three of their last four NFL games, but who also may have a few injury concerns heading into what looks like being a crunch two weeks for Mike Vrabel’s team.

That’s because after the Bills, the Titans will then face another AFC juggernaut in the Kansas City Chiefs, also at home, next weekend.

However, tonight’s game should be a cracker and after this, we may well have a better idea of the lay of the land in the AFC.

Bookmakers BetRivers Sportsbook have the Bills as the -6 favorites for the game given their dominant form over the last few weeks, and they are -265 on the moneyline. The Titans are +228 to win the game.

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Bills Clean Slate Of Health v Banged Up Titans

The injury reports heading into the game make good reading for Bills fans. Buffalo reported a clean bill of health for the game which should see them at full strength.

However, the Titans will definitely be without cornerback Kristian Fulton and linebacker Monty Rice. They also have fullback Khari Blasingame, running back Jeremy McNichols and wide receiver Chester Rodgers questionable for the game.

A.J.Brown could also be a doubt with illness after falling ill late last week, although he along with Bud Dupree, Rodger Saffold, Caleb Farley and Julio Jones should all start the game.

First Quarter Crucial

This is a game that could well be decided by the first quarter of action.

The Titans have had a number of slow starts in games this season and while they have managed to come back to win some, such as the game with Seattle, they have also fallen so far behind in others that they were unable to land the victory.

If the Bills can get off to their customary fast start here and put Tennessee behind by a couple of scores, then they limit the effectiveness of the Titans best player, Derrick Henry, and that will force the Titans to move away from their tried and trusted game plan.

On the other hand, if the Titans defense steps up in this game, and Titans fans have been waiting for them to do so for most of the season, and can stop the Bills offense, then Henry’s influence on the game for the home side could well be huge.

Everyone remembers Henry’s stiff arm move on Josh Norman when these two teams last met, and Titans fans will be hoping that this often played meme is the shape of things to come in tonight’s game.

Titans V Bills History

The teams have met in October in each of the past three seasons, with the Bills winning twice (13-12 in Buffalo in 2018 and 14-7 in Nashville in 2019).

The Titans sole win came last year, but was a big one with the Titans defeating the Bills 42-16 in Nashville, Malcolm Butler landing two interceptions for the Titans and Ryan Tannehill passing for three touchdowns.

The all time record is heavily in favor of the Titans as the teams have met 48 times previously, Tennessee winning 29 and Buffalo 19.

The most famous game perhaps came on 8th January 2000, when the Titans seemed set to lose to the Buffalo Bills in the AFC Playoff game, going behind 16-15 with just three seconds left on the clock. From the kickoff, the famous Music City Miracle occurred, allowing Kevin Dyson the chance to score a game winning touchdown with a 75 yard kick-off return.

Game Predictions

The Titans homefield form hasn’t been great of late and the Bills form is so strong at the moment that it is hard to make a case for the Titans. If Tennessee is to win, they not only need their offense to fire big, but also for their defense to step up considerably.

It is this latter issue that I feel is going to be the Titans Achilles heel. Josh Allen and the Bills offense are playing so well that even very good defenses are struggling to stop them.

As such, I am backing the Bills to win this evening.

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