As soon as the schedule is released we all look at for any advantage to better predict the record. When looking over a single team's schedule, it is simple to see an advantage of a stretch of home games as well as having to travel to the west coast, etc. Well, I got curious and threw together a crude analysis of the Titans' schedule taking into account the previous and upcoming games for our opponents.
At first glance, it looks pretty good. I'll put in a bit of commentary after each game.
Week 1: Sept. 8 at Pittsburgh, noon, CBS (Next @Cin [Monday Night])
No adjustment needed here. No one overlooks the opener, especially a home opener. We do get a slight bonus in that they face a division opponent on a short week next. Slight + to us.
Week 2: Sept. 15 at Houston, noon, CBS (Previous @SD [Monday Night]; Next @Bal)
Coming off a short week after coming back from the west coast is a big +. Looking forward to the Super Bowl chumps also helps us. Big + to us!
Week 3: Sept. 22 San Diego, noon, CBS (Previous @ Phi; Next vs Dal)
They just traveled across the country and then back to Nashville. Could be worn down by the travel. Home game vs Dallas probably doesn't affect our game whatsoever. Slight + to us.
Week 4: Sept. 29 N.Y. Jets, 3:05 p.m., CBS (Previous vs Buf; Next @ Atl [Monday Night])
This schedule probably doesn't affect our game at all. The Jets were pretty unimpressive last year, so this lack of an edge isn't too big of a deal. =
Week 5: Oct. 6 Kansas City, noon, CBS (Previous vs NYG; Next vs Oak)
Again, no effect. Again, KC was a weak team last year (however, I expect them to be MUCH stronger). =
Week 6: Oct. 13 at Seattle, 3:05 p.m., CBS (Previous @ Ind; @ Ari [Thursday Night])
Seattle is geographically isolated from the rest of the league. The fact that our game is sandwiched between to "away" games for them only helps us. They might be looking ahead to a division game on a short week. We will take any edge on this very tough matchup! +
Week 7: Oct. 20 San Francisco, 3:05 p.m., Fox (Previous vs Ari; Next @ Jax)
No luck here. They just had a home game vs a divisional rival and then get the Jacksonville Cupcakes. If it was any other team I'd say this was neutral, but not against this monster. Slight -
Week 8: Oct. 27 Bye
Week 9: Nov. 3 at St. Louis, noon, CBS (Previous vs Sea [Monday Night]; Next @ Ind)
Coming off a short week vs a division rival - and a brutal one at that. Doubt the Indy game affects much. Slight +
Week 10: Nov. 10 Jacksonville, noon, CBS (Previous BYE; Next vs Ari)
Our only game where we face a team coming off a BYE. Then they get the Cards at home. Probably our biggest negative (so this will probably be our annual loss to the Jags). -
Week 11: Nov. 14 Indianapolis, 7:25 p.m., NFL Network (Previous vs StL; Next vs Ari)
Short week for both teams. But Indy has to travel. So a slight + to us.
Week 12: Nov. 24 at Oakland, 3:05 p.m., CBS (Previous @ Hou; Next @ Dal [Thursday - Thanksgiving])
They just had to travel against a tough Houston team, then have to look forward to the big show on Turkey Day with a short week. They could definitely over look the Titans. The only negative is that we have to travel just as far to get to them. +
Week 13: Dec. 1 at Indianapolis, noon, CBS (Previous @ Ari; Next @ Cin)
At least we catch them in between road trips, though not very far. Not much of a positive, but we'll take it! +
Week 14: Dec. 8 at Denver, 3:05 p.m., CBS (Previous @ KC; Next vs SD [Thursday Night])
We are in between two divisional games, the second of which is a short week. Again, they can overlook us.
Week 16: Dec. 15 Arizona, noon, CBS (Previous vs StL; Next @ Sea)
They have to travel to us and then up to Seattle for a divisional game. Slight + to us.
Week 16: Dec. 22 at Jacksonville, noon, CBS (Previous vs Buf; Next @ Ind)
No effect; we just had a home game. =
Week 17: Dec. 29 Houston, noon, CBS (Previous vs Den)
Houston could have a playoff spot locked up and look to rest their starters. Their previous game is a tough matchup. Neutral or a slight + ot us.
What do you guys think? Sure, we don't get many prime time games, but we benefit from the rest of the league getting them! Four MNF games affect teams against us and three Thurs night games (not counting ours) could greatly help us.
Keep in mind our performance throughout the season affects how teams may perceive us and therefor their preparation level. If we suck early, then we may be overlooked sooner. However, if the Titans come roaring out of the gate teams will have to reconsider. Either way, I think the schedule makers were pretty nice to us. Even our three game road stretch is hidden advantages due to our opponents' scheduling.
In my opinion, only two games look to hurt us through this analysis: vs SF (I think we all have chalked that one up as a loss) and then our home game versus the Jags which is easily winnable.