Titans fans witnessed first hand that sometimes you can win a football game with your top three tackles out of commission. Jacksonville will be trying to do the same after losing one of theirs.
The Jaguars offensive line will be facing one of the tougher defensive fronts this week - and will do so with their starting LT Cam Robinson done for the season with a torn ACL. The Titans pass rush with Harold Landry III in the mix made an exponential jump from week one to week two. The rookie EDGE rusher looks to make an even bigger splash against another division rival.
Josh Wells entered the Patriots game to replace Robinson and didn’t do too bad considered his lack of live game action. He didn’t allow Blake Bortles to be sacked on his side.
Wells wasn’t winning the one-on-one match-ups easily and did allow multiple pressures against a Patriots defense whose pass rush is suspect so far.
HC Doug Marrone has already made some statements in regards to what the Jaguars will do in handling Robinson being out of the line up, which could include some moving of parts.
Hate Filled Rivalry
The game on Sunday will be everything fans on both sides expect to see from a rivalry.
Jaguars linebacker Myles Jack spoke on the rivalry recently.
In the article featured on NFL.com, Jack and other Jaguars defenders speak about the importance of beating the Titans - and admit that the team had zero answers for. Tennessee was the quintessential “kryptonite” for a Jaguars team whose defense helped carry the team into the AFC Championship.
The Titans offense was able to demolish the Jaguars in the first meeting, and were able to scrape up enough points in the second match up that helped push the team into the postseason.
The AFC South crown is at stake - and one of the two teams playing Sunday will likely be the victor. The Titans have to find a way to get it done offensively. The team could see a boost with Taylor Lewan back in the lineup and the chance both Marcus Mariota and Jack Conklin can see some action, also.
Defensively, the Titans added more talent. The team is still working on chemistry, but so far the picks and defensive pressure appear to be trending upward.
Rookie 1st Round selection Rashaan Evans was active last week, but only saw one Special Teams snap. It appears to be he is physically ready to rock and roll, but his mental grasp of the playbook is not where the coaches want it to be yet.
If Evans does see the field as a situational pass rusher, it could be a nice way to ease him in and give him some regular season snaps. Evans has the physical tools to make an immediate impact.
Landry appears to have overcome his ankle issue, or at least that is what the film suggests. His ability to wreak havoc cannot be accurately measured through the box statistics. However, the production of those around him will continue to be directly correlated to Landry’s effectiveness.
Evans needs to do the same thing and may get more opportunity in Jacksonville. If Evans can get on the field and show some flashes early, it could be a great sign of things to come for the Titans defense not only for this season, but for years ahead.