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VOL. 45 | NO. 46 | Friday, November 12, 2021

Titans vs. Saints: What to watch

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The Titans bring their 7-2 mark back to Nissan Stadium Sunday against the New Orleans Saints, who will be without Jameis Winston but with running back Alvin Kamara and a stout defense. Here are the four keys to the game.

First down

Get the running game on track. The Titans picked up Adrian Peterson and D’Onta Foreman off the street to help fill in for Derrick Henry. Against the Rams’ tough defense, and behind an offensive line that was missing Taylor Lewan and Nate Davis, the Titans found the yardage tough to come by. With another week to work things out, the rushing attack could be better.

Second down

Stay out of obvious passing situations. By getting the run game on track, the Titans can go back to using their play action. Where the offense gets into the most trouble is in obvious passing situations when teams can tee off on Ryan Tannehill. It happened a few times against the Rams and has been an issue at times all season.

Third down

Stop Kamara. The former Tennessee Vol is one of those guys who has to be accounted for on every single play. The Titans will have to decide if they want a safety or a linebacker to match up with the 2017 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year. The fact that Jayon Brown was back in the lineup and did a good job in pass coverage is a plus, and he might draw the Kamara assignment.

Fourth down

Stay humble, keep working. This probably won’t be an issue, since the Titans have had to play mix and match all year long due to injuries at a number of positions. But when you are riding a five-game win streak, there can be a tendency to whitewash the shortcomings that are always addressed following a loss. The Saints, like the Titans, have had to deal with key injuries but remain a dangerous team, one that is quite capable of coming to Nashville and leaving with a victory.

-- Terry McCormick

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