Michael Moraitis (Co-expert)
No team in the NFL has been able to stop Lamar Jackson this season, and it’s hard to believe the Titans are going to be the team to do it.
What the Titans do have going for them is that the Ravens’ best players haven’t taken the field since Week 16, so there will inevitably be some cob webs to shake off. With that said, it’s much easier for a running team like the Ravens to overcome — or avoid entirely — a situation like that.
I expect Tennessee to get off to a rare fast start and perhaps jump out to an early lead, but there’s nothing to suggest that this defense has the pieces necessary or the discipline to slow down everything Jackson and the Ravens can throw at it.
That’s not a knock on the Titans, but rather an endorsement of just how hard it is to stop Baltimore, and as important as it will be for the Titans to keep possession to keep Jackson off the field, the Ravens are better than anyone at it with their league-best rushing attack.
Derrick Henry will get his yards, and Ryan Tannehill will thrive off the play action with Baltimore selling out to stop Henry, leading to the Titans scoring more points than last week and making this a game.
But the loss of Jayon Brown will loom large and the Ravens are going to be able to do what they do best, which is run the ball and work off that with the utilization of their tight ends, a position Tennessee has had trouble defending all season long even when Brown is healthy.
This is not a good matchup for the Titans, and in the end the Ravens’ No. 1 scoring offense will be too much for Tennessee to overcome.
Final score prediction: Ravens 31, Titans 24