Ben Greene (2-0, Lead Columnist)
Tennessee Titans 27, San Diego Chargers 20
This should be an interesting game as both teams have suffered aggravating last-second losses to the Houston Texans already this season. The Chargers responded to their Week 1 loss by going out and racking up 539 yards en route to a 33-30 victory over the Eagles. The Titans have picked up just 477 yards all season.
San Diego has the best passing attack, and maybe the best overall offense, that the Titans have faced so far this year. And after a very up-and-down performance by the secondary last week, Tennessee’s defense will need to come up big to give the Titans a chance to win. After holding Matt Schaub to only 123 yards and two interceptions in the game’s first 57 minutes, the Titans’ defensive backfield gave up 175 yards to Schaub in the last three minutes of regulation and in overtime. I expect Tennessee’s potential-packed defense to rise to the occasion in the team’s home opener, especially after being victimized down the stretch last week. Philip Rivers will still pick up yardage, but the erratic quarterback will also throw at least one interception, as his team will have little to no success running the ball.
Offensively, I predict the Titans will find a little more balance that it has so far this season, as it leads the league with 75 rushes, but is last in the NFL with 50 passing attempts. Better play calling should also benefit both Chris Johnson and Jake Locker, so I expect both of them to have their best games of the season. Tennessee’s ability to sustain drives and control the clock will be key this week, just as it was Week 1. As long as they can keep Rivers off the field, the Titans will beat the Chargers for the first time since the Houston Oilers did it in 1992.
(Titans 1, Chargers 0)