Sunday, October 21, 2012

Week 7 AFC East game picks: Titans at Bills

Lead writer Nick St. Denis and AFC East Daily contributors Dan Begnoche, Sean Donovan and Sam Hollingsworth pick the Buffalo Bills' home matchup with the Tennessee Titans.

Nick's take:
For most of the week, instinct said the Bills would win here. Then logic took over. The Bills' run defense is awful, and even Chris Johnson's half-hearted effort should be enough to help quarterback Matt Hasselback guide the Titans to a win. C.J. Spiller and Fred Jackson are major weapons in the Bills' offense, but quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick negates their work with drive-killing incompletions and interceptions.
Prediction: Titans 23, Bills 20

Dan's take:
This could come down to the run game, with both teams struggling to stop it and one struggling to get it going. Johnson has only averaged 60 yards per game for the Titans, but with the Bills giving up nearly 174 yards rushing per game, he's poised to break out. Also, keep an eye on Buffalo safety Jairus Byrd to make an impact in the turnover department, as he's coming off a two-pick day and was named last week's AFC Defensive Player of the Week.
Prediction: Bills 24, Titans 17

Sean's take:
The Bills' defense looked better than usual last week, victimizing a pathetic Arizona Cardinals offense en route to a 19-16 overtime victory. Tennessee isn't a great offensive team by any stretch but has enough weapons to score plenty of points on a defense giving up a league-worst 5.6 yards per play. Or at least enough points to outscore Fitzpatrick and a struggling Bills offense.
Prediction: Titans 30, Bills 13

Sam's take:
The Bills have both of their premier running backs back in the game and healthy, and the Titans simply lack the weapons needed to hang with the Bills’ offense. Add in the fact that starting quarterback Jake Locker is out again this week, and barring a superstar performance by Hasselback, the Titans will be fighting an uphill battle all game.
Prediction: Bills 35, Titans 20