Opponent Profile: Eagles Look To Snap Losing Streak Against Titans With Rebound Win
By Kevin McGuire
The Philadelphia Eagles have a perfect team coming to Lincoln Financial Field this weekend to try and move on from a demoralizing loss on the road against the Green Bay Packers. The Eagles host the Tennessee Titans at 1:00 p.m. on Sunday (on CBS) and look to rebound with a win to remain in first place in the NFC East.
So, just who are these Tennessee Titans anyway?
The Tennessee Titans are sitting in third place in the AFC South behind the Indianapolis Colts and Houston Texans with a record of 2-7 heading into Monday night against the Pittsburgh Steelers. That includes a record of 0-2 against the NFC East this season with losses to Dallas and Washington.
The Eagles own an all-time record of 6-4 against the Titans, dating back to the franchise's days in Houston as the Oilers. But, the Titans have won four straight meetings against the Eagles dating back to 2000. Since moving from Houston to Tennessee, the Titans are 2-0 against the Eagles in games played in Philadelphia. The last time Tennessee played in Philadelphia, the Titans went home with a 31-13 victory in 2006.
Titans on Offense
On offense, the Titans have been anything but mighty. A little more than halfway through the season the Titans rank 27th in passing offense and 23rd in rushing offense. The Titans have gone four straight games without scoring 20 points heading into the Monday night game against the Steelers. Change is needed to rejuvenate the offense, so the Titans are starting to take a chance with some young talent.
Rookie quarterback Zach Mettenberger, a sixth-round draft pick, has taken over under center and second-round running back Bishop Sankey already leads the Titans in rushing with 357 yards.
Titans on Defense
The Eagles have gone undefeated against teams playing a 4-3 defense this season, but are just 3-3 against teams basing their defense on a 3-4 formation. The Titans play a 3-4 defense, so the Eagles will have to solve whatever it is that tricks them when combating a 3-4 system. The Titans have been gashed on the ground by teams with a good running game. So far this season the Titans are 29th in the NFL against the run, so the Eagles should be able to make some things happen with LeSean McCoy and Darren Sproles. The Titans are better against the pass, ranked 11th against the pass in the NFL.
Titans Players To Watch
Bishop Sankey, Running Back: The rookie out of Washington is expected to be the primary running back for the Titans moving forward, but he has yet to break out with a big game. Sankey rushed for 1,870 yards and 20 touchdowns for the Washington Huskies last season. Once the offensive line comes together in Tennessee, Sankey should take off.
Jurrell Casey, Defensive End: Casey leads the Titans defense with four sacks this season, but they seem to come in bursts. Casey has brought down the quarterback four times, but did so with two sacks in two games. It had been three games between sacks for Casey heading into Monday night. He should be expected to bring pressure on Eagles quarterback Mark Sanchez.
No game in the NFL should be considered an automatic win, but this week looks to be about as favorable for the Eagles as any match-up around the NFL this week could be. The Eagles should be able to rebound in a big way at home this weekend, and playing at home has been good for the Eagles. If the Eagles cannot thrive on the running game this weekend, they could be in trouble of getting upset by the Titans, but this seems unlikely.
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Kevin McGuire is a Philadelphia area sports writer covering the Philadelphia Eagles and college football. McGuire is a member of the FWAA and National Football Foundation. Follow McGuire on Twitter @KevinOnCFB. His work can be found on Examiner.com.
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