Tennessee Titans at Oakland Raiders: Three things to watch in Week 14
By Daniel Davis
The Oakland Raiders will play host to the Tennessee Titans in Week 14, and here are three things to keep an eye on in the matchup.
The Oakland Raiders are coming off tough losses against the Kansas City Chiefs and New York Jets where their offense crumbled in blowout losses. For a team that had high hopes for this season, sitting at 6-6 seems disappointing, especially considering how well they played to get out to a 6-4 start.
However, their opponent in Week 14, the Tennessee Titans are a team at 7-5 who can easily be beaten. Ryan Tannehill took over the team a few weeks ago and never looked back. The Titans also have Derrick Henry who’s running hard on every play and making it hard to run out the clock on Tennessee.
Even with all their strengths, their defense ranks 11th overall and their rushing defense ranks the same with only allowing 1,224 yards on the ground with an average of 94 yards per game. Despite how strong they have been up front against the run, their passing defense ranks 24th and have 33 sacks, which ranks 13th.
With all that being said, here are three things to watch out for this weekend.
Derek Carr vs. Tennessee’s middle of the pack passing defense
It’s no secret Derek Carr has been struggling and missing open receivers. However, he’s still the quarterback of the team and this is the week to throw his heart out. I’m hoping Carr can get back to his 2016 self soon with the end of the season looming. The Titans have an average, at best, defense when it comes to passing defense.
Josh Jacobs against the staunch Titans rush defense
Currently, there’s only four running backs over 1,000 yards: Derrick Henry (1,140), Dalvin Cook (1,046), Christian McCaffrey (1,167) and Josh Jacobs (1,061). Jacobs’ rookie year has been nothing short of incredible. He also has a 4.9 yards per carry which is tied for 6th in the league with LeSean McCoy, Derrick Henry, and Nick Chubb – not a bad club to be in. This, of all weeks, will test the rookie’s resolve and try to help this offense get going again.
Ryan Tannehill against the Raiders Defense
Ryan Tannehill is 5-1 since taking over the team. He also has over 70% completion with 12 touchdowns and 4 interceptions. He also has an 9.1 yards per attempt with a 113 QB rating. The offense for the Titans can get the ball going with him and on the ground. Tannehill was average in Miami, but has found new life in Tennessee after Marcus Mariota was benched.
This week is not only important for the playoff picture for the Raiders, but for the Titans as well. both teams are in the playoff hunt with Oakland having the 8th seed and the Titans having the 7th. I expect the Raiders will play hard and get a win this week.