Matchup rating: 84.9 | Spread: KC -7.5 (53)
What to watch for: Titans running back Derrick Henry isn't the only storyline in this game, but it sure seems like it after he ran for 188 yards against the Chiefs in Week 10. Doing much better this time is a big thing for the Chiefs, who are 9-0 when allowing the opponent to rush for 110 yards or less -- but 4-4 when allowing more. -- Adam Teicher
Bold prediction: All of the focus on stopping Derrick Henry will make the Chiefs defense more vulnerable to the passing game. After totaling 160 yards in the previous two games, Tennessee quarterback Ryan Tannehill will capitalize on one-on-one coverage, throwing for 250 yards and two touchdowns. -- Turron Davenport
Stat to know: According to NFL Next Gen Stats, Chiefs wide receivers had 13 plays with the ball carrier reaching 20-plus miles per hour this season, the most in the NFL. Tyreek Hill and Mecole Hardman both have six such plays, tied for the most among receivers in 2019. In addition, the Chiefs wideouts have been open (3-plus yards of separation, per NFL Next Gen Stats) on 45.6% of their targets, the highest rate in the NFL.
Key matchup: Titans' deep-ball play-action vs. the Chiefs secondary. Even if the Titans do control tempo with Henry, the Chiefs and quarterback Patrick Mahomes will still get eight or nine possessions. So the Titans need points in this one, and explosive play opportunities off play-action offer an opportunity. Look for Tennessee to dial-up some shot play throws for Tannehill here. Bring in your big-boy personnel, sell the run and push the ball over the top to Kalif Raymond or A.J. Brown. Read more.
Betting nugget: Sunday will be the fifth time this season that Tennessee has been an underdog of at least four points. It won each of the first four outright, including beating Kansas City in Week 10. Tennessee is also the fifth team to win its wild-card and divisional-round games as underdogs of at least four points. But the previous four teams were 0-4 outright and 1-3 against the spread (ATS) in the conference title games. Read more.
Officiating nugget: Referee Tony Corrente will get another shot after an eventful wild-card game in Houston, where he had to be talked out of awarding a fraudulent touchdown to the Bills. Corrente's regular-season crew threw an average of 17.1 flags per game, the fifth most in the NFL.
Davenport's pick: Titans 28, Chiefs 24
Teicher's pick: Chiefs 28, Titans 17
FPI prediction: KC, 75.1% (by an average of 8.9 points)
Matchup must-reads: The first $40 million-a-year QB? NFL execs predict Mahomes' potential payday ... One of Andy Reid's biggest wins -- but is the best still yet to come? ... Fortune favors the bold: QB wasn't a need when Chiefs drafted Patrick Mahomes ... Damien Williams at long last establishes himself in Chiefs backfield ... From Dolphins discard to Titans treasure, Ryan Tannehill had 'to move on' ... How two trades helped catapult the Titans to the AFC title game ... How the Titans pulled the stunner to beat Lamar Jackson, and what's next ... Lessons from baseball helped Titans' A.J. Brown blossom at football