Things are starting to rock in Smashville! The Evil Emperor and Darth Vader left licking their wounds after a 34-10 throttling at the hands of the Titans. Can I get a Titan Up?!
While we would all love nothing better than to bring another opponent into Nissan Stadium the Titans are on the road this week. As big of a win as last week was for the franchise, the upcoming matchup against the Colts might be even bigger. The AFC South is still very much up for grabs for all teams not named the Jaguars. A win by the Titans here could help eliminate the Colts from playoff competition and tighten the race with the Texans
One of the most intriguing storylines in this game has to be the the quarterback matchup between two white hot offenses. In their last three games, the quarterback numbers are very similar.
Andrew Luck’s last three games haven’t come against any pristine competition, but they’re still impressive no matter what. Luck’s last three opponents are Buffalo, Oakland, and Jacksonville. Through those three games Luck has thrown for 680 yards for 10 touchdowns and one interception. Also, Luck has completed 72.4% of his passes and a passer rating of 126.9.
In those three games, all Colts wins, Luck has thrown around 20 completions per game, a significantly lower clip than normal. What’s most impressive is, through the course of those three games, Luck has been sacked zero times. Tennessee will need to do a better job of getting to Luck or Luck could very well continue his recent dominance.
Mariota’s last three games have been arguably more impressive, given how inept the offense as a whole has looked for most of the season. Mariota has played a much more impressive three game stretch than Luck. Mariota came within a failed two point conversion from beating the Chargers. He then followed that up with victories over the Cowboys and the Patriots.
Through that stretch, Mariota has thrown for 705 yards with five touchdowns and one interception. Mariota has completed 71.4% of his passes and posted back to back career highs in passer ratings. What’s most impressive is Mariota has been doing this with an offensive line still struggling to protect him. Over the last three games Mariota has been sacked eight times. Indianapolis doesn’t have a stout pass rush but still could cause problems if the Titans OL doesn’t gel.
This game appears to be one that will come down to which quarterbacks make the most plays for their teams. Historically, Luck starts games out slow. Tennessee jumped out to a fast start last week and I see no reason that both of these things happen again. Luck makes a furious comeback but it isn’t enough. Titans 26 Colts 24. Titan Up!