It’s not exactly the sexiest Monday night matchup of the season in Week 6 as a pair of 2-3 AFC South teams square off with Tennessee visiting Indianapolis. Both clubs could be without their starting quarterback as well.
Indianapolis Colts vs. Tennessee Titans
When: Monday, 8:30 PM ET Where: Nissan Stadium, Nashville Point Spread: Titans -7.5
Point Spread and Betting Analysis
Indianapolis (3-2 ATS) has covered in all three home games but was destroyed in both road matchups, 46-9 in Week 1 at the Rams and 46-18 in Week 4 in Seattle. The Titans (2-3 ATS) are 1-1 both straight up and ATS at home, losing Week 1 to Oakland (26-16) and winning Week 3 vs. Seattle (33-27). The Colts have won the past 11 meetings in this series and 16 of the previous 17, but they usually had either Peyton Manning or Andrew Luck for those games. That won’t be the case here. Last year, Indy won 34-26 in Nashville behind 353 yards passing and three touchdowns from Luck and won 24-17 at home as Luck threw for 262 yards and two scores.
Luck had shoulder surgery in January and hadn’t practiced with the team since until late last week, although he was limited. He’s not likely to play before November. Jacoby Brissett, acquired on the eve of the season from New England for receiver Phillip Dorsett, has played well in Luck’s spot. In Sunday’s 26-23 overtime win over San Francisco, Brissett threw for a season-high 314 yards and rushed for a touchdown. T.Y. Hilton, who led the NFL in receiving yards in 2016, caught seven balls for 177 yards.
Ageless Adam Vinatieri, all of 44 and maybe the best kicker in league history, hit the winning 51-yarder in OT. It was the 27th time in his career that Vinatieri made a game-winning kick in the fourth quarter or overtime. There aren’t many kickers in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, but Vinatieri belongs in Canton five years after he retires. Manning’s No. 18 was retired at halftime of Sunday’s game and a statue of him was unveiled outside Lucas Oil Stadium the day before.
There won’t be a spread on this game until the status of Tennessee starting QB Marcus Mariota is determined. He was a game-time decision Sunday in Miami but sat out with a hamstring injury. If he was that close, it seems likely he would go here, especially with the extra day of rest.
Veteran journeyman Matt Cassel started in the 16-10 loss to the Dolphins and only threw for 141 yards and was sacked six times. Not too often will you see a team lose when its defense holds the opposition to 178 yards but that was the case for the Titans, who managed only 188 yards themselves, their fewest since the 2013 season finale. Tennessee had been 4-0 all-time under Coach Mike Mularkey in games decided by seven points or fewer.
Monday Night Football Colts vs. Titans Prediction
Presuming Mariota plays, Titans win 21-17. If he doesn’t play, take the Colts.