Remember The Titans? You Won’t Forget Their Week 5 Domination

Posted on October 15, 2020

The Tennessee Titans continue to barrel through the opposition against all odds, fighting off COVID-19 and mowing down the Buffalo Bills during their Week 5 matchup.

Tennessee hadn’t stepped on the field in 16 days, but that didn’t stop them from dominating Buffalo with an impressive 42-16 home-stadium win Tuesday night.

But did the betting public have faith in Tennessee?

The Titans’ long road to a Week 5 victory

A long, rocky road preceded this week’s Tennessee victory. More than a few factors were stacked against the team, all brought about by an onslaught of positive COVID-19 tests.

Twenty-four Tennessee players and staff members have tested positive since Sept. 24. The initial positive results led the league to postpone their Week 4 faceoff against the Pittsburgh Steelers to Week 7.

An additional string of positive COVID-19 tests halted practice yet again and ultimately postponed Week 5’s game. Originally scheduled for Sunday, Oct. 11, the game was rescheduled for the following Tuesday, Oct. 13.

Tennessee returned to practice this past weekend in preparation. Practices were quickly truncated after a coach tested positive Sunday morning, leaving the fate of the game hanging in the balance.

The league officially cleared the team to play its Week 5 contest after no new positive tests emerged on Monday. Nevertheless, more than a handful of players remained on the reserve/COVID-19 list as the Titans returned to the field.

Buffalo’s winning record forecasted a road win

The Bills catapulted into the 2020 football season with enormous success by winning their first four games. Coming into Week 5, Buffalo ranked first in the AFC East and was the outright favorite for this competition.

In the past, the Bills have relied on their playoff-worthy defense to counteract any weaknesses in their armor. Consequently, the team finished the 2019 season with 10 total wins and six losses.

What the Bills lacked in defense this year, they were making up for on the attack. However, the team was sacked with complications once it failed to capitalize on offensive drives.

The Titans return with a Week 5 upset

Tennessee’s powerhouse of a team didn’t seem to miss a single step after the series of postponed and abbreviated practice sessions. The Bills, on the other hand, looked like the ones in need of some additional practice time.

Bills quarterback Josh Allen threw two interceptions to Tennessee’s Malcolm Butler after recording only one interception in the first four games of the season.

Titans rusher Derrick Henry and quarterback Ryan Tannehill were two other integral forces, further solidifying the fate of the Bills. Henry logged a low 57 rushing yards compared to his average, and he still managed two touchdowns.

Tannehill added 195 passing yards and three passing touchdowns to his own portfolio.

As a result, the Titans made NFL history by scoring a touchdown on every red zone possession, allowing no sacks, and permitting zero turnovers during the game. No professional team has accomplished this since the New England Patriots back in 2007.

Titans betting percentages didn’t quite predict this outcome.

Did the betting public have faith in the Titans?

Betting trends for the game further emphasized the public’s inclination toward the Bills. If ever there were a time to fade the public, this would have been it.

The point spread at BetMGM started at -3.5 and closed at -3 favoring Buffalo. Meanwhile, the over/under opened at 53, closing at 51.5.

TeamsPoint SpreadHandle %Bet %Over/UnderHandle %Bet %
BUF Bills-3.565.3%62.3%Over 51.539.1%42.1%
TEN Titans+3.534.7%37.7%Under 51.560.9%57.9%

DraftKings bettors were even more decisive about Tennessee’s fate. Players bet a whopping 79% of all spread bets on the Bills, while the Titans only accounted for 26% of the moneyline handle.

TeamsPoint SpreadHandle %Bet %Over/UnderHandle %Bet %MoneylineHandle %Bet %
BUF Bills-3.575%79%Over 52.541%40%-17774%67%
TEN Titans+3.525%21%Under 52.559%60%+15526%33%

The Titans face off against the Houston Texans next Sunday. Houston recorded its first win of the season last week against the Jacksonville Jaguars with a 30-14 victory.

Tennessee is poised to plow through yet another opponent on its ever-unpredictable journey to the Super Bowl if the team can maintain this trajectory.

What will Titans betting percentages look like next week?

Photo by Associated Press
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Alec Cunningham

As a college athlete, Alec Cunningham played Division II golf at Tusculum University. She graduated in 2015 with a bachelor’s degree in Journalism and Professional Writing. She then returned to her love of written word in 2000 after working in the music industry as a concert promoter, tour manager and artist developer. As a journalist, she's covered a variety of topics and currently specializes in Tennessee online sports betting and Virginia casino news. She served as a panelist at this year's All American Sports Betting Summit, discussing the ever-evolving role of women in the gambling industry.

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