You hate to say that any game this early in the season, particularly one that is being played out of conference, is a must win game for any club. However, the 0-2 Tennessee Titans have to beat the NFL odds on Sunday against the Detroit Lions if they really want to even think about sniffing the playoffs this year.
There is no doubt that Tennessee has been one of the worst teams in football this year. Granted, the team has taken on the Super Bowl favorite New England Patriots and the San Diego Chargers, who are just one of the two teams in the AFC yet to lose a game this year. Still, the Titans rank dead last in the league in scoring at just 11.5 PPG and second to last in total offense at 248.0 YPG. None of that is good considering the fact that the defense is allowing 36.0 PPG and is ranked third to last in the league.
Still, there is a bit of history that Tennessee has on its side that cannot be ignored against the visiting Lions on Sunday. The Titans have won three straight in this series, including blowing out Detroit 47-10 on Thanksgiving Day four years ago. The boys from Motown have averaged just 55.7 yards per game on the ground in those games, and this year doesn’t look that much more promising with RB Kevin Smith as really the only featured sort of back that the team has to offer.
The Titans know that they still have a lot of work to do, though. They are 3 ½-point underdogs in this one because they have yet to show that they can run the football with RB Chris Johnson, and QB Jake Locker really hasn’t proven that he can get the ball up the field to any of his receivers.
There is at least a little bit of hope in Nashville though, that perhaps this is the week the team gets the bagel out of the win column and a season that was thought to have the potential of the playoffs, gets back on track.