For the third year in a row, your Oakland Raiders head to Tennessee to take on the Titans. The last two meetings have been close, and you should expect nothing less this time around. With two stellar quarterbacks and two lackluster defenses, this one should be a shootout, and a fun one to watch.
Oakland Raiders @ Tennessee Titans
Time: 1:00 PM EST/10:00 AM PST
Venue: Nissan Stadium
Some good news for Oakland is that David Amerson, Amari Cooper, and Khalil Mack are all good to go. Rookie CB Gareon Conley, LB Cory James, and K Sebastian Janikowski are all questionable. DB Keith McGill and FB Jamize Olawale are both out. I would expect both Janikowski and and James to play, while Conley may see limited snaps.
The Titans will only be missing CB LeShaun Sims, who is out dealing with a groin injury. Tackle Taylor Lewan will be good to go.
How will both quarterbacks play coming off injuries? Both Derek Carr and Marcus Mariota suffered leg injuries in week 16 last year. They’re both 100% now, but how will they play in their returns?
Will Marshawn Lynch be the same player that retired in 2016? Lynch was an elite player for Seattle when he called it quits during Super Bowl V. Will we see the same player that hung up his cleats, or has his age and a year off caught up to him?
Will we see the same defense? The Raiders’ defense was dismal last year, ranking 26th in the league. With some new additions like Gareon Conley, and John Pagano, will we see an improvement? There certainly needs to be one if this team expects to go on a run this year.
Keys to the Game
For the first key, the Raiders need to contain Delanie Walker. Walker is one of the best at his position, and the Raiders have been awful at covering the position the last few years. If Oakland can contain Mariota’s best weapon, they stand a good chance.
Second, Oakland needs to establish the run game. The Raiders have a nice RB trio, and they need to smash it down the Titans’ throat early. This will get Marshawn Lynch back into action quickly, and open up a very dangerous passing attack.
For the last key, the Raiders need to create a turnover early. Whether it be a Khalil Mack strip sack or a Karl Joseph interception, an early turnover would do wonders for their confidence. It will be very important to get off on the right foot for this unit.
I predict the Raiders come home with a win, 42-38. It will be a shootout, and a very fun game to watch, but I think Oakland’s passing attack is just too potent. Go Raiders!