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Titans vs. Jaguars: 3 Matchups to Watch

NFL: Tennessee Titans at Jacksonville Jaguars Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

The Titans will meet the winless Jaguars in Week 5. Tennessee will look to bounce back after last weekend’s horrendous loss to the Jets. The Titans will once again be short handed on offense, with the likes of Julio Jones not expected to play.

The 2021 Jaguars don’t know how to win football games yet. It seems like they are finding new ways to lose every game. I’m not sure how they lost that Week 4 contest against Cincinnati. They were in control for large portions of it, but blew it in the second half. There’s also the matter of Urban Meyer and whatever the heck is going on there. Division games can be tricky, but the Titans should win this one.

There are some intriguing one-vs-one matchups that will be worth monitoring when these two teams take the field. Here are three battles we are particularly excited to keep our eye on.

HAROLD LANDRY VS. JAWAAN TAYLOR

Landry is easily Tennessee’s best defender right now, and is leading the league in pressures with 25 through four weeks. The Titans need to pressure Trevor Lawrence on Sunday, and it starts with Landry. Zach Wilson had far too much time to create off-script in Week 4. If given the same opportunities, Lawrence will hurt this Tennessee secondary.

Landry will spend most of his time rushing against Jaguars right tackle Jawaan Taylor. The former Florida standout is off to a steady start in Year 3, having earned himself a pass protection grade of 67.7 through four weeks, per Pro Football Focus. This should be a competitive battle on Sunday.

A.J. BROWN VS. SHAQUILL GRIFFIN

I’m taking a bit of a risk by listing Brown here before we find out his practice status on Friday, but Brown practiced in a full capacity on both Wednesday and Thursday, which indicates that his return to the field is imminent.

If Brown does indeed play, he should see a ton of Griffin on Sunday. The Jags will probably want to avoid having rookie cornerback Tyson Campbell line up with Brown on too many instances, so they could ask Griffin to shadow Brown. If this scenario comes to fruition, Brown would surely have the upper hand. But make no mistake, Griffin is a solid cornerback that’s off a hot start in 2021.

DERRICK HENRY VS. ALL OF JACKSONVILLE

You know we had to do it. In Henry’s last five games against the Jaguars, the Yulee, Florida native has rushed for an astounding 740 yards and nine touchdowns on 104 carries of the football. That works out to an unbelievable 7.1 yards per carry. Simply put, Henry has owned the Jaguars over the course of his career, and Tennessee will need another big performance from him on Sunday.

Jacksonville has fielded a middle-of-the-pack run defense thus far, allowing 106.2 yards on the ground per game. They’ll face their stiffest test yet in Henry. If all 11 players on Jacksonville’s defense don’t come prepared to tackle and play a physical brand of football against Henry on Sunday, we’ll surely be talking about yet another historic Henry performance against his hometown team.