Following the bye, it was a relatively easy week for the Tennessee Titans. On a day where the offense wasn’t exactly clicking, the Titans were still able to pick up a 20-0 victory over the helpless Jacksonville Jaguars. The win moved Tennessee out to 9-4, still right in the thick of the race for the No. 1 seed in the AFC.
Next up is a trip to Pittsburgh, where the Steelers are fighting for their playoff lives. Mike Tomlin’s group is 6-6-1 on the season, sitting squarely on the playoff bubble. They trail teams like the Broncos, Bengals, Browns, Colts, Chargers and Bills, and desperately need this one to keep pace or gain any ground. The Titans obviously need this one for seeding purposes, especially with the Chiefs having already won this week.
The oddsmakers think this one comes down to the wire. After opening as a small favorite, this spread has come all the way down to an even pick ‘em. The Titans are favored in some places, but by no more than a point. The total is set at 43.
The Titans are likely to be down a few key pieces defensively, something they’ve grown accustomed to at this point. Linebacker David Long, nose tackle Teair Tart and cornerback Jackrabbit Jenkins all were unable to practice on Thursday, along with guard Rodger Saffold.
Pittsburgh has dropped three of their last four, while also tying against the Lions. They’ve given up 35+ in each of those last three losses, which is welcomed news for an offense that has sputtered without Derrick Henry or A.J. Brown on the field. Can Ryan Tannehill take advantage? That may come down to protection, where T.J. Watt will make things difficult.
This is a big one for both sides, and it’s difficult to get a feel either way. Pittsburgh does have their backs up against a wall here, so the Titans can expect their best shot on Sunday afternoon.