There's no love lost between AFC South rivals Jacksonville and Tennessee as they meet on Thursday night with the Titans still chasing a play-off spot.
Jacksonville Jaguars (4-8) @ Tennessee Titans (6-6)
(0115 GMT Friday - Sky Sports Main Event)
The Jaguars ended their seven-game losing streak on Sunday so you’d think would have little to play for but pride against the play-off chasing Titans, but games between these two heated rivals are akin to a huge derby contest.
The rivalry goes back to the turn of the century and these games are among the most fiercely contested in the NFL – so Jacksonville would like nothing more than to deal would could be a knockout blow to Tennessee’s post-season hopes.
Tennessee are jostling for position alongside Miami, Indianapolis and Denver all just a game behind Baltimore – who sit in the final AFC wildcard spot but face the Chiefs this week. A defeat though, would put them right behind the eight ball.
The Jags defence looked like its own self when it inflicted a shutout loss on Andrew Luck’s Colts on Sunday, although new QB Cody Kessler could lead them to just six points on two field goals.
This looks a certainty to be another low-scoring defensive tussle with the two teams both having elite units who allow just 20 points a game, while offensively they’re both bottom five scoring teams leading to a ultra-low points line of just 38.
At this stage of the season you’ve usually worked out who teams are, but these Titans frustrate and surprise in equal measure – they’ve beaten the Cowboys, Texans and Patriots this season but then disappointed hugely in other losses.
The Jaguars, at least, have been consistently disappointing. You can’t lay all the blame on Blake Bortles and Cody Kessler won’t transform this team into a free-scoring offensive powerhouse all of a sudden.
The formula here is simple, and identical for both teams in what will be a chippy defensive battle – control the clock, and the ball, run it well and get ahead early.
Running backs will win this day – Leonard Fournette is back for the Jags from suspension looking for a fourth game with 100+ scrimmage yards, while Titans counterpart Derrick Henry has 214 yards and two scores in his last two home games against Jacksonville.
Points: Under 38 points at 10/11
Touchdowns: Under 3.5 touchdowns at 11/8