TENNESSEE TITANS: TRUE FRONTRUNNERS FOR FOOTBALL'S BIG PRIZE?
Most sports fans know the famous line most commonly used in the National Football League; Offence wins games, Defense wins championships; this explains why the Tennessee Titans are the front-runners in this years NFL race for the Super Bowl. The Tennessee Titans are coming off a season last year that saw their franchise quarterback have the worst statistical season of his career but still managed to limp the Titans into a wild-card playoff spot which saw them lose in the first round to some say a better San Diego Chargers squad.
Offence wins games, The Titans are doing that with ease at some points, with huge margins of victories in Week's 2, 3, 4, 7 by outscoring their opponents 119-46 and in the remaining weeks winning by a touchdown and a field goal respectively, and with a bye week in week 6, this leads to the week 8 match-up against the Indianapolis Colts.
This match-up brought an excellent effort from the offence lead by the direction of Kerry Collins behind centre and running backs Chris Johnson and LenDale White, who ran over the Indy defence for two rushing touchdowns and 90 yds combined which was a big part of the winning effort. However the offense hit a bit of a speed bump in the Week 9 match-up against the Green Bay Packers only scoring 19 points, in which 3 were needed in overtime in order to chalk up the W and move to 8-0.
The Titans faced a tough Green Bay defence that dropped several Kerry Collins passes that could have been intercepted. Rob Bironas, who has been a cornerstone for the offense by being a near perfect field goal and PAT kicker for the Titans for years kicked 4 field goals and 1 PAT in the victory. The Titans offense aside from punting 6 straight times in the final quarter of Sundays match against the Pack while trailing still managed to pull out a victory in overtime. The offense is winning games for the titans so that part of the equation is being taken care of.
The reason the Titans are a real contender for the Super bowl is not because their offence can score points by running the ball and kicking field goals, It is because the Titans defense does not allow for other teams to get into the end-zone of kick field goals as often as their offense does. The Titans defense are tied for 1st in the league with 13 interceptions and ranked 6th in sacks and 4th in Passes deflected. Opposing teams are 41/119 on third down conversions against the Titans defense.
Two players on the Titans defense are in the top 5 in interceptions, Cortland Finnegan and Nick Harper who both have 4 interceptions. The Titans play a wide set on the defensive line which makes it very difficult for teams to run to the outside. The area inside the tackles is controlled by the Titans two dominating defensive tackles in Albert Haynesworth and Brandon Ford. The passing game is covered by the hard hitting line-backing crew lead by all-pro outside linebacker Keith Bullock.
When Super Bowl 43 rolls around in late January or Early February, the Tennessee Titans have a very strong chance of being the AFC representative and in the end hoisting the Vince Lombardi Trophy with a defensive victory. The Titans play the Chicago Bears in week 10 in Chicago at Soldier Field, which is one of the most difficult stadiums to win in the National Football League. It will be a real test for the Kerry Collins lead offence as well as the defence who is facing a Chicago offense that has the ability to put up big points with rookie RB Matt Forte.
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