This game won't get past the first quarter before it comes apparent that the Tennessee Titans do not match up well with the Pittsburgh Steelers. This will leave a surly and increasingly sparse crowd at LP Field in Nashville on Thursday night.
Not that those fans shouldn't be prepared for this eventuality. The Titans enter this game having been outscored in their last two by a combined score of 68-21, and the brutal reality is that neither game was as close as the score suggested.
The point is, the Titans have been playing terribly, and they are now 30th in rushing yards, 25th in passing yards allowed and 28th in rushing yards allowed.
They are a much better, yet still exactly average, 16th in passing yards, but that is only because they've been behind and had to throw the ball almost every play. They are 24th in yards per attempt.
So the Titans have all of this working against them, and in the scope of this game, none of those pathetic numbers touch on what will make this matchup so lopsided.
The Titans are not getting a pass rush. They are 29th in the league in sack percentage, and the quickest way to derail the Steelers' offense is to obliterate their terrible offensive line.
Ben Roethlisberger has been running for his life all season, while he is excellent at extending plays, it is still beneficial for a team to force him to extend them, rather than just allow him to choose to extend them by standing around and waiting for guys to break open.
Despite the lack of blocking, Roethlisberger is enjoying the finest season of his career. He has nine touchdown passes to just one interception and he is on pace to set a career-high in yardage.
He will pick this defense apart, and with Rashard Mendenhall sparking new life into the running game, the Titans' defense is doomed, and I mean more doomed than can be expected in their typical matchup.
The Titans' offense will not be able to keep up. While the Steelers' defense is not as fierce as it has been in recent years, they are still third in passing yards and 11th in rushing yards.
The Steelers will win this one, 31-17.
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