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Tennessee Titans @ Houston Texans : Keys to Victory

1. Run, and stop the run. The Texans are an average run defense, but in order to get Rusty Smith comfortable in his first ever NFL start, the Titans need to lean on the run. Randy Moss has done everything we dreamed of for Chris Johnson, and with the Texans pathetic defense, there needs to be a steady dose of running. Defensively, I wouldn't say we should try to make Matt Schaub beat us, because he can definitely do that, as he 6 touchdowns and 0 interceptions in his last few games against us, but Arian Foster has to be limited. He has emerged into one of the top running backs this year, on pace to set Houston's franchise record for rush yards, and he truly gives Houston a double sided offense that can do even more damage this year.

2. Attack the secondary. The Texans' secondary is the worst in the league. I'm sure the Titans are aware that they have the worst statistical pass defense in the league, actually on pace to be the worst pass defense in the history of the NFL, and they have allowed a 100 yard receiver in all but two of their games this season. I have said this every week since Randy Moss has joined the team, but maybe this will be the week he breaks out, having the game we expected from the beginning. Rusty Smith has a history of trying to force balls downfield, and with Randy Moss downfield, that may not be such a bad thing. If he doesn't do well against the worst coverage team in the NFL, with a quarterback that actually knows he's on the field, I don't expect him to ever be a real factor in the passing game for the Titans. 

3. Win the little battles. The Texans are horrible at creating turnovers, another knock on their defense, and they are horrible in punt/kick coverage. Marc Mariani could be the difference maker in this one. We know how beneficial Mariani has been for the Titans this year, and giving a short field for Rusty Smith to work on makes it a lot easier for the rookie quarterback. Stupid penalties cost us the game in overtime last week, and that cannot happen again. It's absolutely unacceptable to just give away free yards for losing your temper.