Why can’t we have nice things?
The Week 9 Sunday Night Football showdown between the Tennessee Titans and Los Angeles Rams was shaping up to be one of the better games of 2021... Then Titans RB Derrick Henry was ruled out for the immediate future with a broken foot, taking must the shine off of this non-conference clash.
The Rams were 6-point NFL betting home favorites before the Henry news broke Monday morning, sliding this spread to L.A. -7.5 with oddsmakers doubting Tennessee’s chances minus the NFL’s rushing leader chewing up the turf.
Here are our free NFL picks and predictions for Titans at Rams on Sunday, November 7.
Titans vs Rams odds
Odds via the Covers Line, an average comprised of odds from multiple sportsbooks.
As mentioned, Los Angeles was installed as a 6-point home favorite last Sunday night, and jumped to -7.5 with news of Henry’s foot injury. The total made a slight adjustment as well, dropping from 54.5 points to 53.5. Use the live odds widget above to track any future line movements right up until kickoff and be sure to check out the full NFL odds before placing your bets.
Titans vs Rams picks
Picks made on 11/4/2021 at 2:45 p.m. ET.
Click on each pick to jump to the full analysis.
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Titans vs Rams game info
• Location: SoFi Stadium, Inglewood, CA
• Date: Sunday, November 7, 2021
• Time: 8:20 p.m. ET
• TV: NBC
Titans at Rams betting preview
Titans: Tory Carter FB (Out), Kendall Lamm (Out), Khari Blasingame FB (Out), Nate Davis G (Out), Rashaan Evans LB (Out), Greg Mabin CB (Out), Derrick Henry RB (Out), Amani Bledsoe DE (Out), Tory Carter FB (Out), Josh Reynolds WR (Out).
Rams: Von Miller EDGE (Out), Tremayne Anchrum OT (Out), Chris Garrett LB (Out), Alaric Jackson OT (Out), Bryce Perkins QB (Out), Sebastian Joseph-Day DT (Out).
Find our latest NFL injury reports.
Betting trend to know
The Over is 10-1 in the Titans’ last 11 road games. Find more NFL betting trends for Titans vs. Rams.
Titans vs Rams predictions
Rams -7.5 (-110)
The pointspread may have moved just a point and a half (pretty significant for a non-QB) but that could still be selling Henry’s worth short. The dominating running back wasn’t just an asset on offense but also helped bail out a bad Titans defense by limiting their exposure and keeping opposing offenses off the field.
The Titans rank 26th in offensive pace, calling a play every 29.07 seconds, and handed off on 47.36 percent of those snaps (fourth-most rushing plays in the NFL). Behind Henry, this run game was more efficient than some passing playbooks out there, boasting an EPA per run of -0.021 (eighth-best) and logging an average of 32:47 worth of possession per contest (second-most).
Without Henry, not only does the weight fall on Ryan Tannehill and the passing game, but the Titans’ play-action playbook – which started to gain traction the past three weeks – doesn’t have that run threat to help create space for the air attack. Nor do L.A.’s pass rushers need to worry about whatever run game Tennessee rolls out, allowing them to go all-in Sunday night.
If – and when – the Titans fail to make gains on the ground, this defense will be called into action for more minutes than it’s used to. Those snaps will also come against the top passing offense in the NFL, with L.A. ranked No. 1 in Passing DVOA by a lot. Add to that pickle a laundry list of injuries up and down this Tennessee stop unit, namely in the secondary where Tennessee has just three healthy corners.
Without Henry keeping the Rams’ pass rush honest and hiding a suspect stop unit, Los Angeles should easily breeze over this 7.5-point spread Sunday night.
Over 53.5 (-110)
No King means more passing reps for Tannehill, which, in turn, means big gains and more clock stoppages due to incomplete passes: a recipe for Overs. To its credit, the Titans’ passing game is finding its form. Tennessee owns an EPA per dropback of +0.336 during the team’s four-game winning streak, which sits behind only Buffalo and the Rams.
Los Angeles’ defense isn’t the lockdown unit it was last year, ranked No. 9 in Defensive DVOA and padding some of its defensive metrics against the likes of Houston, Detroit and the New York Giants in their previous three outings. They have allowed yardage and points to capable offensive opponents like Tampa Bay, Indianapolis and Arizona.
As for the Rams offense under Matthew Stafford, it's reached new heights with its brand-new quarterback. Los Angeles is hanging nearly 31 points an outing on the opposition and leads the NFL in points per play at +0.493 on the season.
The Titans gave up 335 yards passing to Josh Allen in a tight win over Buffalo in Week 7 and have surrendered big numbers through the air against other elite QBs, such as Russell Wilson (320) and Kyler Murray (289). With the Tennessee defense on the field more, Stafford will have more reps to rip this secondary apart than those that came before him.
Darrell Henderson anytime touchdown (-152)
Henderson has emerged as a real red zone threat, scoring five touchdowns on the ground while adding two more through the air.
Los Angeles will pick on the Titans' secondary with the passing game in order to get inside the 20-yard line but will turn to the versatile Henderson to get them over the goal line.
Tennessee ranks 22nd in red zone run defense per DVOA, and four of its projected starting front seven come into Week 9 with questionable designations.