Thursday Night Football Schedule 2012: When and Where to Catch Intriguing Battle

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Thursday Night Football Schedule 2012: When and Where to Catch Intriguing Battle
Jared Wickerham/Getty Images

Another week, another rousing Thursday Night Matchup.

I'm not saying these Thursday night games are boring, but when sheep are trying to fall asleep, they watch them.

I mean, come on. Giants vs. Panthers. Browns vs. Ravens. Cardinals vs. Rams. These aren't exactly matchups that people are canceling plans in order to watch.

That being said, the Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Tennessee Titans at least presents some intrigue. The Steelers have an explosive offense capable of scoring points in a hurry while the Titans should keep things competitive at home.

What follows is everything you need to know to catch the action. 

 

When: Thursday, Oct. 11 at 8:20 p.m. ET

Where: LP Field, Nashville, TN

Watch: NFL Network

Listen: Sirius XM Radio: 93. Also, Steelers fans can find their radio affiliates here. Titans fans can find their radio affiliates here.

Live Stream: NFL Sunday Ticket

 

Steelers Player to Watch: Ben Roethlisberger, QB

Joe Sargent/Getty Images

This is no longer the Steelers of yore. For so long, Pittsburgh relied on their elite defense and running game, but that time is no more. Much like the rest of the league, Mike Tomlin's squad is becoming pass happy. This year, the Steelers are passing the ball 61.25 percent of the time, which is 13th most in the league.

How many yards will Roethlisberger record on Thursday?

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Part of that has to do with the absence of Rashard Mendenhall and the inability of his backups to do much of anything, but it's also because of Ben Roethlisberger

Big Ben is on pace to tie his career high for touchdowns in a season while at the same time throw just eight interceptions. It would be more than only 2010, when he played 12 games. His completion percentage is his best since 2009, his QB rating is his best since 2007 and his QBR is his best ever.

Roethlisberger, partly thanks to the elite pass-catching duo of Antonio Brown and Mike Wallace, is putting together the best season of his career.

Don't be surprised if he torches a Titans secondary that is dead last in opponent's completion percentage, 27th in opponent's yards per pass and 25th in opponent's passing yards per game. 

 

Titans Player to Watch: Chris Johnson, RB

Chris Johnson is averaging a robust 8.7 feet per carry this season. If you take out his Week 4 explosion against the Houston Texans, he's averaging 4.3 feet per carry.

In case you were wondering, that's really, really bad. Like, so bad that you have to start measuring in feet instead of yards. 

Here's a Chris Johnson highlight video, because I'm sure you haven't seen a Chris Johnson highlight in a while

CJMC1KIHL (CJ May be Close to 1K If He's Lucky. Everyone seems to like making a play off his nickname, so I thought I'd join) has continued his atrocious fall from grace this season, and as long as he continues to do absolutely nothing on the ground, the Titans' entire offense is in trouble.

Matt Hasselbeck is a good veteran quarterback, but if teams aren't worried about Johnson, they'll drop defenders in coverage, thus making it impossible to get anything going through the air. 

Of course, the Steelers are letting teams run for 4.1 yards per carry against them (16th in the NFL), so there is a tiny sliver of hope for Johnson this week. If he once again fails to take advantage, expect another loss for the Titans. 

 

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