Sunday Night Football Betting Preview: Will the Titans Win as Road Underdogs Against the Packers?
We've got an excellent matchup for Sunday Night Football in Week 16, as the 10-4 Tennessee Titans travel to Lambeau Field to face the 11-3 Green Bay Packers with plenty of playoff implications. In a matchup of the league's top offenses, per our metrics, we have plenty of intriguing betting angles, as well.
On FanDuel Sportsbook, the Packers opened as 4.0-point favorites but have currently settled as 3.0-point favorites. The Packers are usually a public team, and with 61% of the bets and 64% of the money -- according to oddsFire -- they are seeing a heavy amount of the action, though not quite as much as you might typically expect with Green Bay. The moneyline opened at Green Bay -195 but now sits at -164, with 59% of the bets and 63% of the money siding with the Pack.
The over/under has dropped from 55.5 to 53.5, possibly due to the projected wind and cold at Lambeau. It hasn't scared off bettors just yet, as we are still seeing 77% of the bets and 78% of the money on the over. However, this line may drop further as the weather becomes clearer to the public.
In a game with such a high point total, we've got a ton of player props and parlays to consider. Let's check out our projections.
Passing Game Preview
The Titans' offense is our top-rated unit in the NFL, according to schedule-adjusted Net Expected Points (NEP) per play, and they are just as strong passing the ball as they are running it.
Tennessee ranks third in the league with 0.30 Adjusted Passing NEP per drop back thanks to the extremely efficient play of quarterback Ryan Tannehill. Tennessee has been extremely balanced this year with just two more rushing attempts than passing attempts, and they face a Packers team that is better playing the pass than the run. Green Bay ranks 13th in the NFL against the pass, allowing 0.11 Adjusted Defensive Passing NEP per drop back, and while teams would rather attack them on the ground, they've seen the NFL's 8th-highest pass-to-rush ratio against their defense -- largely thanks to their offense's ability to score points and take the lead. Both sides of the ball come into this matchup healthy, with Green Bay safety Will Redmond the lone exception, as he will miss the game with a concussion.
Tannehill is blessed with a pair of big, physical receivers in A.J. Brown and Corey Davis, and the two are lighting it up from an efficiency standpoint. Brown leads the team with 1.04 Reception NEP per target on 87 targets, and Davis is close behind with 1.01 Reception NEP per target on 79 targets. Brown has seen more consistent usage this year, never topping nine targets in a game but falling below six targets only once. Brown has three 100-yard games on the season and has scored a whopping 10 touchdowns in 12 games played. He's a physical threat in the red zone and can break a tackle to turn a short pass into a long gain at any moment.
Davis' workload is more volatile, with three games of 10-plus targets as well as three games with just 3 targets. With five touchdowns on the year, Davis isn't the scoring threat that Brown is. But Davis has seen all of his double-digit target games and three of his five touchdowns come in Titans losses, so with Tennessee settling as 3.0-point underdogs, Davis could be in for a big workload. Packers' corner Jaire Alexander hasn't always been used as a shadow corner, but he will make life difficult for whichever receiver he lines up against. You would have to assume that Brown and Alexander matchup more often than not.
Green Bay's offense is our second-best offense in the league, and their passing game leads the way with 0.29 Adjusted Passing NEP per drop back, good for fourth in the NFL. With a 1.28 pass-to-rush ratio, the Packers are the 10th-most run-heavy team in the league, and while some of that is due to their balanced offense, much of that comes as a result of being a winning team running out the clock in the fourth quarter.
The Titans' defense has seen the fifth-most pass-happy play-calling against them this year, and with the sixth-worst passing defense, one allowing 0.15 Adjusted Defensive Passing NEP per drop back, this matchup sets up well for Aaron Rodgers. The Packers will get center Corey Linsley back, giving them their preferred offensive line alignment.
Everyone knows that Rodgers and Davante Adams form one of the league's best connections, and Rodgers will likely look Adams' way early and often despite likely shadow coverage from cornerback Malcolm Butler. But the Packers may be better off spreading the ball around just a bit more, as there are several options out-producing Adams' 0.80 Reception NEP per target -- though that's still a good numbers, especially considering Adams' massive volume.
One of those options is Allen Lazard, whose 1.10 Reception NEP per target on 40 targets leads the team. Lazard and Marquez Valdes-Scantling have both been seeing 65% or more of the offensive snaps over the last three weeks, but last week Lazard passed MVS with 77.4% of the snaps, his highest since before his injury in Week 3. Lazard's production hasn't quite caught up with his usage yet, but he has been efficient when given the opportunity and turned 6 targets into 5 receptions for 56 yards last week. Valdes-Scantling is the much more volatile option and has seen his role diminish, recording no catches in three of his last four games. But in Week 14 against the Detroit Lions, he caught all 6 of his targets for 85 yards and a touchdown, so he hasn't disappeared completely.
Rushing Game Preview
The Titans rank fourth in the league with 0.13 Adjusted Rushing NEP per carry on the year, which should come as no surprise with Derrick Henry stiff-arming his way toward 2,000 yards. Henry leads the league with 321 carries, and among all running backs with more than 100 carries, he ranks seventh in Rushing NEP per carry with 0.14 and third in Rushing Success Rate with 50.2%. It's staggering to see his combination of volume and efficiency, and his talent allows the passing game to build off of him, which generally isn't the case in the NFL.
The Green Bay run defense ranks 24th in the league, allowing 0.11 Adjusted Defensive Rushing NEP per carry, so it should be easy to see where this one is going. The Titans will likely test this Packers run defense early and often, and if this game remains close, Henry could be in for yet another monster performance.
The Packers' running game holds its own against this dangerous Titans attack, ranking fifth in the league with 0.13 Adjusted Rushing NEP per carry. With Jamaal Williams looking doubtful with a quad injury, we may be in for another massive Aaron Jones workload. With Williams nursing the injury last week, Jones saw his snap share spike up to 90%. Jones has been extremely efficient this year, ranking fifth among all running backs with 100 or more carries with 0.15 Rushing NEP per carry. His 180 carries pales in comparison to Henry's workload, but with Williams likely missing this matchup, Jones looks primed for a big week.
The Titans' run defense has been middle of the pack, ranking 16th in the league allowing 0.05 Adjusted Defensive Rushing NEP per carry. Rookie running back A.J. Dillon should see some increased usage with Williams out, but we have yet to see him take on a big workload this season.
Game Projections and Props
Our algorithm gives the Packers a 66.4% chance of winning outright, which makes their side of the moneyline the slight favorite, as we project a small 4% return on investment (ROI). We see the 3.0-point spread as pretty much off limits, as the Green Bay side projects a minuscule 1% ROI. And both sides of the point total project as negative ROI, so we are going to have to look to player props to bet in this one, and luckily there are a bunch.
The potential cold weather and wind need to be taken into effect before betting any overs, so make sure to check the latest weather reports before betting here. One same-game parlay I like is the over on Ryan Tannehill's passing yardage (253.5) with the over on Corey Davis' receiving yardage (62.5). We've seen Davis have his best weeks in games where the Titans are trailing, and this sets up as one of those weeks. That parlay combines for a +178 payout.
The other side of that bet would be if you think the cold weather leads to a run-heavy game. It's hard to find good odds on Derrick Henry, so let's parlay the over on his rushing yardage (108.5) with the Titans moneyline for a +193 payday. If the Titans can get a lead, Henry should be able to hit that over easily against this subpar Packers run defense.
Finally, for a Packers bet, let's not get overly complicated here. With Jamaal Williams set to miss the game, an Aaron Jones touchdown (-150) seems very likely. Let's parlay that with a Davante Adams (-160) touchdown -- because he scores nearly every week -- for a +185 payout.