Jaguars @ Titans: Gameday


When the Tennessee Titans take to Nissan Stadium today to face the Jacksonville Jaguars for a second time in three games, they have a chance to extricate a bunch of rabid monkeys from their collective backs.

The last time these two teams met in the friendly confines on the Cumberland River, veteran quarterback Charlie Whitehurst replaced an injured Jake Locker and Zach Mettenberger, passed for 233 yards on his way to a 16-14 win over the Jags. The last Titans victory at home.

It will not be a week 13 battle of the behemoths in this week 13 matchup, but a Titans win would give the home town fans a much deserved win and extend the yearly harvest to thee games. Territory they haven’t seen since 9-7 season that got Mike Munchack fired.

Interim head coach Mike Mularkey has stood tall on his promise to Amy Adams Strunk, which was to keep rookie quarterback Marcus Mariota upright and somewhat safe, but I don’t think a win against the 4-7 Jaguars today will be enough to get the interim part of his title removed.

I’ve continued to be impressed with what I’ve seen from Marcus Mariota this season, even considering that he doesn’t have a lot of playmakers to help him win a game, but this will be the first time that he will face a team for the second time.

The two things that have been missing from his arsenal for the most of the season has been a solid running game, and receivers other than Delanie Walker who are able to make a play.

Mike Mularkey has issued a call-to-action this week for his wide receivers to step up and make a play:

"Titans interim coach Mike Mularkey challenged his receivers this week to go up and make more plays on the football"

Mularkey referenced the play during the Oakland game last week where Harry Douglas went up and got a Mariota pass. He is asking for Kendall Wright and rookie Dorial Green-Beckham to do the same this week.

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"Wright was limited in his return from knee injury last week, and he should be more active on Sunday. Moving forward, the Titans need him to contribute in a bigger way."

As far as running the football, Mularkey has promised more carries for rookie David Cobb this week. Cobb has just seven carries for five yards in his first two games combined since returning to the lineup.

The Jaguars are ranked number one in the league for average yards per carry at 3.3, and the Jags held the Titans to just 20 yards in the first 13 carries on November 19th but the Titans got 84 yards on the next 13 carries.

Antonio Andrews has emerged as the work-horse back and I don’t see Mularkey going away from that success if he has a chance to win a game, no matter how many carries he wants to give to Cobb.

The Jacksonville Jaguars are not a team that makes a lot of changes on defense, but you have to think after Marcus Mariota got loose for the 23 yard touchdown run in the Thursday night game, they will want to keep him contained and in the pocket today.

Dexter McCluster and defensive lineman Mike Martin are the only players who are out for today’s game, but linebacker Derrick Morgan is questionable, and will probably not see much action, if any.

Tight end Anthony Fasano, defensive lineman Sammie Hill and defensive back Marqueston Huff are nursing injuries but are expected to play.

On the Jaguars side, ESPN Jags reporter, Mike DiRocco is reporting that wide receiver Allen Hurns  didn’t clear the NFL’s concussion protocol on Wednesday, Thursday or Friday. Hurns could have played if he were to clear the protocol on Saturday, but he would have missed too much prep time during the week.

Neal Sterling and Bryan Walters are listed as questionable for today, leaving the Jags with only three receivers who are good to go. Allen Robinson, Marqise Lee and Rashad Greene.