The 2018 NFL playoffs get going this afternoon, with a long-time friend beginning his latest question for a Super Bowl ring. Alex Smith and the Kansas City Chiefs kick off the playoffs hosting the Tennessee Titans in an AFC wild card matchup. The game kicks off at 1:35 p.m. PT on ESPN, with Sean McDonough and Jon Gruden in the announcer booth, and Lisa Salters on the sideline.
The big news for this game is that Titans running back DeMarco Murray has been ruled out with a knee injury. Derrick Henry will get the start in his place. While Murray is the Titans’ big money back, Henry has been the more effective rusher this year. I would argue this could actually improve the Titans chances of winning this game.
Alex Smith has led the Chiefs to the playoffs four of the past five seasons, but they have only a wild card win over the Houston Texans two seasons ago to show for it. The Chiefs drafted Patrick Mahomes as their quarterback of the future, and the pressure is assuredly on for Smith and Co. to do something more this year.
The Chiefs are between an eight- and nine-point favorite in this game. I would not be surprised to see them get upset by the Titans, but I think the Chiefs end up pulling it out. I’m going to take the points with the Titans, but I see a Chiefs outright win in a squeaker.
Tennessee Titans at Kansas City Chiefs
Where: Arrowhead Stadium, Kansas City, MO
When: January 6, 2018 | 1:35 p.m. PT
Announcers: Sean McDonough, Jon Gruden, Lisa Salters
Radio: Titans Radio Network | Chiefs Radio Network
Online Streaming: WatchESPN
Odds: Chiefs -9, 44.5
Titans blog: Music City Miracles
Chiefs blog: Arrowhead Pride