Titans Continue AFC South Slate Sunday at Houston


NASHVILLE, Tenn. — This week the Tennessee Titans (1-5) play their first road game since Sept. 20, traveling to face the division rival Houston Texans (2-5).  Kickoff at NRG Stadium (capacity 71,795) is scheduled for noon CST on Sunday, Nov. 1.



This week's game will be televised regionally on CBS, including Nashville affiliate WTVF NewsChannel 5.  Spero Dedes will handle play-by-play duties alongside analyst Solomon Wilcots.

The Titans Radio Network, including Nashville flagship 104.5 The Zone, will carry the game across the Mid-South with the "Voice of the Titans" Mike Keith, analyst Frank Wycheck, gameday host Rhett Bryan and sideline reporter Jonathan Hutton.


The Titans were last on the road at Cleveland in Week 2.  Last week, they concluded a five-week stretch that included four home games and a bye with a 10-7 loss at the hands of the Atlanta Falcons.

Second-year quarterback Zach Mettenberger started against the Falcons in place of the injured Marcus Mariota.  Mettenberger was 22-of-35 passing for 187 yards, including a 19-yard touchdown strike to wide receiver Kendall Wright.

The 10 points allowed by the Titans were the fewest by an opponent since the 2014 season opener at Kansas City (10 points).  Outside linebacker David Bass and inside linebacker Avery Williamson each recorded interceptions, the latter of which came on fourth-and-goal from the one-yard line.  It was one of a pair of fourth-down stops for the defense against the Falcons.

In overall defense in 2015, the Titans rank fourth in the NFL, allowing an average of 324.3 yards per game and trailing only the Denver Broncos (281.3), New York Jets (283.2) and Seattle Seahawks (294.1).  The Titans are second in the league in passing defense (195.2 yards per game) behind the Broncos (192.2).

Prior to last week, Mariota started the first five games of the season.  His left knee was injured Oct. 18 against the Miami Dolphins, and although he was able to finish that game, he was inactive against the Falcons.  The second-overall draft pick owns a 93.2 passer rating as a rookie, completing 103 passes for 1,239 yards, nine touchdowns and five interceptions on 161 attempts. * *


The Texans head into this week's matchup on the heels of a 44-26 loss at Miami.  Quarterback Brian Hoyer passed for 273 yards and three touchdowns, while former Titans wide receiver Nate Washington produced nine catches for 127 yards and two scores.  However, the Dolphins used 175 rushing yards by Lamar Miller and four touchdown passes by Ryan Tannehill to take a commanding lead and never look back.

Houston has used both Hoyer and Ryan Mallett at quarterback this season.  Hoyer has appeared in five games with three starts, including starts in the last two contests.  His season statistics include 106 completions on 180 attempts for 1,346 yards, 11 touchdowns and three interceptions (95.7 passer rating).

Hoyer has the benefit of one of the top young pass-catching talents in the NFL, third-year wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins.  The former first-round pick leads the NFL in 2015 with 776 receiving yards and is tied for second place with 58 receptions.

On defense, the Texans are led by two-time Associated Press Defensive Player of the Year J.J. Watt.  Watt is tied for fourth place in the NFL with six sacks.

Bill O'Brien is in his second year as head coach of the Texans.  In his first campaign, the Texans finished 9-7 and became the sixth team since 1978 to post a winning record following a season in which it won two or fewer games.  O'Brien finished second in Associated Press NFL Coach of the Year voting.


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