Six Things to Watch in Titans vs. Eagles on Sunday


NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The Titans face the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday at Nissan Stadium.

Here's a look at six things to watch:

Mariota Unleashed

Quarterback Marcus Mariota played with a glove on his right hand when he came off the bench last Sunday to guide the Titans to a win over the Jaguars. But it almost seemed like he was wearing handcuffs, because of his limitations throwing the ball downfield as a result of his elbow injury. Well, Mariota has made progress this week, and he'll be back in the starting lineup. Titans coach Mike Vrabel said the team hopes to open up a bigger range of plays that would allow Mariota to throw the ball more downfield. It's something to watch on Sunday.

Running Game

OK, this isn't going to be easy. The Eagles are ranked No.1 in the NFL in rush defense, and they have a front seven that swarms to the football. But the Titans are going to need to run it to keep the Eagles honest. Titans running back Derrick Henry hasn't been happy with what he described as "trash play" this season. He expects more of himself. Running back Dion Lewis has proven to be a nice weapon as well. The Titans need to find success here.

Receivers On the Spot

The Titans released Rishard Mathews this week, after the veteran receiver expressed the desire to be traded or let go because of a lack of opportunities in the team's offense. Will Matthews be tough to replace? Well, his stat line for this season (three catches, 11 yards) didn't win fantasy football owners any games. Matthews brought experience to the team, and now others will be called on to play even more. Corey Davis has looked good, and he needs to keep it going. Receivers like Tajae Sharpe and Taywan Taylor will get more opportunities, and Darius Jennings and Nick Williams will be in the mix as well.

Jack Conklin's Debut

The Titans have used so many different combinations at the tackle position during the first three games, and finally in Week 4, the true starting lineup should be in place with the 2018 debut of right tackle Jack Conklin, who will enter the fray against a tough Eagles defense. Conklin has looked good in practices, and he looks leaner but stronger after dropping weight and adding muscle. How will be move? And how will he move others? Those are the big questions heading in.

Contain Wentz

Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz is back in the saddle, and he looked good in his first game back from an ACL injury. Wentz completed 25-of-37 passes for 255 yards in a win over the Colts. Some of the Titans compared Wentz to Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson this week, because of his elusiveness, and ability to keep plays alive with his legs. Titans defensive lineman Jurrell Casey, already with three sacks, has been a disruptive force this season. Casey and the rest of the blue crew need to contain Wentz, and keep him from settling in.

Slow Down Ertz

The Eagles have questions at the receiver position as well, because of injuries and uncertainty. But they have a sure thing in tight end Zach Ertz, who leads the team in targets, catches (21) and receiving yards (215). The Titans will likely use several players to defend Ertz, because he's going to be on Wentz's radar all game. If the Titans can keep Ertz from killing them, they'll enhance their chances of slowing down Philadelphia's pass attack. looks back at the all-time series between the Tennessee Titans and Philadelphia Eagles. (Photos: Donn Jones, AP)

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