We featured the Tampa Bay Buccaneers last night, and today we look at another squad looking at making massive leaps forward. The Tennessee Titans are in a similar position, a young quarterback that is looking to lead his team to the next level. There are expectations placed on the Titans this season. A wildcard berth at the very least, but you will find some people out there who have them heading to the top of the AFC South. I can’t argue that much, the rest of the division doesn’t give much to get excited about. If you have already looked at the lines for Week 1, a trap may have caught your eye.
The Raiders, a team with lofty goals, is just a 1-point favorite over the Titans. Mind you, the game is being played in Tennessee, but the Raiders are still going to attract a lot of money. The public will be on Oakland, that I can assure you. Will they be led to the slaughterhouse? Time will tell. It’s important not to read too far into Week 1 games in any case, though. I think it’s going to be one of the most entertaining games of Week 1, no doubt about it.
Marcus Mariota is the guy that everyone will have their eyes on come Week 1. Derek Carr vs. Marcus Mariota sounds pretty good to me. Mariota got an extra weapon in the offseason, as the Titans signed Eric Decker to a 1-year deal. He spent three years with the Jets and he never really caught many headlines. Is it really his fault playing in that environment, though? Decker was a valuable asset for the Broncos when he was in Denver. We’ll see if he can recapture his former form.
Decker is coming off a year where he was active in just three and a hip surgery. Some players don’t respond so well to a hip injury, so we’ll see soon how he looks out there. There haven’t been any reports of setbacks. Look for Mariota to use the preseason to get a rapport with him, especially the third game of the preseason where starters will get more action.
The Titans are a run-first team and got good production out of DeMarco Murray in his first-year as a Titan. He ran for 1,287 yards and 9 touchdowns. Derick Henry saw spurts of potential as well as a rookie, galloping for 490 yards for an excellent yard per carry of 4.5 in a backup role to Murray.
Murray has been sidelined with a hamstring injury, so this opens the door for Henry to show off a bit. A horrendous beat last night, as Dalton threw a pick at the 1-yard line to give away valuable points, and then Roberto Aguayo missed a field goal late. Nice knowing you Aguayo, but you’ll be losing a lot more money than me because of that miss. Head below for our Titans vs. Jets pick for Saturday in the NFL Preseason.
Tennessee Titans vs. N.Y. Jets Betting Odds:
Betting odds provided by Bovada.lv
Titans vs. Jets Pick:
The Titans are gearing up for a run at the playoffs, while the Jets on the other hand may want to consider taking for the draft. The Jets are going to be bad, very bad. Spearheading the quarterback position is Josh McCown. Yeah, that Josh McCown. I don’t fault the guy as a backup, but a starter? No thanks. In two years total he appeared in thirteen games for the Browns, and now he goes from one dysfunctional organization to another. Last season he had five appearances with 6 touchdowns and 6 interceptions. Following McCown in the rotation will be Christian Hackenburg and Bryce Petty. In other words, the Jets don’t have a quarterback.
Hackenberg is in danger of getting the rug pulled out from underneath him. If he doesn’t show any potential soon, I don’t know how much longer, even the Jets, can take with him. He had an opportunity with the first team in a couple of days ago in camp, but failed to impress. The Jets really want to give this guy the starting reins, but he hasn’t proven himself at all. He had one good year at Penn State and then what?
Petty, the former Baylor product will follow after Hackenberg. Since coming into the year in 2015, he’s seen mostly play in the preseason. He saw some regular season action last year and got torched for 3 touchdowns and 7 interceptions. In 11-on-11 drills on Wednesday, Petty was vastly superior to Hackenberg, who once again looked lost according to reports.
The Titans do have a suitable backup, Matt Cassel. Cassel is best known for leading the Patriots to 10 wins after Tom Brady blew out his knee in 2008. While he hasn’t been the best starter after that year, Cassel has shown the ability to be serviceable enough to be a quality backup signal-caller. Alex Tanney should be following Cassel tonight. Tanney has bounced around practice squads since getting drafted in 2013. He made his regular season debut last season after Zach Mettenberg went down, and played nicely enough going 10-for-14 with 99 yards and a touchdown to Dorial Green-Beckham.
The Jets are going to give Hackenberg a good, long look in this game. In my opinion, he’s just going to fail and look bad again. Cassel should seize the situation and get the Titans ahead for Tanney to clean up against Petty. Laying the points on the road in a preseason game usually isn’t the greatest idea, but I can’t side with Hackenberg and Petty here tonight.
PICK: TITANS -3 (-110)