NASHVILLE -- The Titans face the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday in the home opener at Nissan Stadium.
Here’s a look at six things to watch:
Mariota vs Colts
OK, I don’t need to remind anyone about the season finale against the Colts last year. But here’s a Cliffs Notes version: Mariota sat out the game because of lingering injuries, and the Titans saw their season come to an end instead of making the playoffs. Earlier in 2018, Mariota was knocked out of a game early against the Colts, and things got ugly. On Sunday, Mariota has a chance to keep the momentum going after a 3 TD game last week in Cleveland while quashing the 2018 talk.
The Colts racked up a whopping 203 rushing yards in their season opening loss to the Chargers, with running back Marlon Mack leading the way with 174 yards. With quarterback Jacoby Brissett now at the helm, the Colts would love to establish the ground game every week to take pressure off of their maturing QB. The Titans did a decent job against the run in Week One, but will need to be better against one of Indy’s strengths – their offensive line.
Titans running back Derrick Henry got so tired of talking about December of last season, he changed the subject in a hurry. Henry accumulated 159 yards of total offense against the Browns -- 84 on the ground, plus a 75-yard touchdown catch, one of his two scores on the day. The Titans would like to get physical with the Colts, and their success in the running game could open up the entire offense.
Titans Pass Catchers
A week ago, it was receiver A.J. Brown (3 catches, 100 yards) and tight end Delanie Walker (5-55, with two touchdowns). This week, it could be receivers Corey Davis, Adam Humphries, and Tajae Sharpe, who were all quiet in the season opener. Titans offensive coordinator Arthur Smith headed into the season with plans to build game plans that take advantage of different personnel each week. What’s in store for Week 2?
Contain T.Y. Hilton
Colts receiver T.Y. Hilton doesn’t wear a watch when he plays, but he knows what time it is. And he’s been a Titans killer over the years. Hilton led the Colts with eight catches for 87 yards and two touchdowns last week, and he had 35 catches for 684 yards (114.0 per game) in six games vs. AFC South opponents in 2018. The Titans did a solid job against Cleveland’s talented receivers last week, and they also picked off three passes. The MMCNB crew needs to rise to the occasion again.
It will be a special day at Nissan Stadium, as the team will retire the jersey numbers of Titans legends Steve McNair (No.9) and Eddie George (No.27). The jersey retirement ceremony will take place at halftime and it will include comments from Titans controlling owner Amy Adams Strunk, a representative from the McNair family and George. Make sure you’re in your seat for this.
TitansOnline.com looks back at the all-time series with the Indianapolis Colts. (AP Photos)
BE A PART OF HISTORY
This Sunday, September 15 will be a special day as the Titans retire QB Steve McNair’s No. 9 jersey and RB Eddie George’s No. 27 jersey during halftime of the team's home opener vs the Indianapolis Colts.
Don't miss this amazing day in franchise history!