Titans Look to Keep Playoff Hopes Alive Christmas Night vs. Chargers

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. --** This week the Tennessee Titans (7-7) play their final home game of the 2009 season, as they welcome the AFC West Champion San Diego Chargers (11-3) to LP Field (capacity 69,143) on Christmas night.  The Dec. 25 kickoff is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. CST.

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Friday's contest is the fourth game in franchise history scheduled for Christmas and the third at LP Field.  Most recently, the Titans hosted the Denver Broncos on Christmas 2004 and lost 37-16. The Chargers have never previously played on Christmas.

The game could impact the crowded AFC playoff field.  With two weeks remaining in the regular season, the Chargers, who clinched their fourth consecutive division crown last week, are in control of the second seed in the AFC behind the Indianapolis Colts.  The Titans' narrow playoff hopes remain alive after recording their seventh win in eight games last week against the Miami Dolphins.  Including the Titans, there are eight teams at 7-7 or 8-6 vying for two Wild Card positions, with Denver and Baltimore, each 8-6, currently positioned at the top of the group.  

The Titans and Chargers have not met since the 2007 playoffs, when the Chargers ended the Titans' season with a 17-6 Wild Card win at Qualcomm Stadium.  It gave the Chargers six consecutive wins in the regular season and playoffs versus the Titans.

THE BROADCAST

NFL Network will broadcast the game to a national television audience.  In the Nashville market, the game can be seen on WSMV-TV 4.  Bob Papa will handle play-by-play duties, while Matt Millen will provide color commentary. 

The Titans Radio Network, including Nashville flagship 103.3-WKDF, will broadcast the game across the Mid-South with the "Voice of the Titans" Mike Keith, color commentator Frank Wycheck, sideline reporter Cody Allison and gameday host Larry Stone.

Westwood One Radio Sports will carry the national radio broadcast.  Ian Eagle (play-by-play), Randy Cross (color commentary) and Laura Okmin (sidelines) will provide the call.

LAST WEEK

In their game last week, the Titans used a career-high three touchdown passes by Vince Young and a pair of field goals by Rob Bironas to inch past the Dolphins 27-24 in overtime. Their fourth takeaway of the game, an interception by Michael Griffin in overtime, put Bironas in position for his 46-yard game winner.

Running back Chris Johnson totaled 104 yards on 29 carries.  With nine consecutive 100-yard rushing efforts, his streak is tied for the third longest in NFL history. His 1,730 rushing yards put him within 204 yards of Earl Campbell's 1980 franchise record of 1,934 yards and within 270 yards of 2,000.  Also, Johnson needs 254 yards from scrimmage to break Marshall Faulk's 1999 NFL record of 2,429 scrimmage yards.

Meanwhile, the Chargers hosted the Cincinnati Bengals last week. Philip Rivers passed for 308 yards and three touchdowns, and Nate Kaeding's 52-yard field goal with three seconds remaining gave them a 27-24 win, their ninth consecutive victory after a 2-3 start in 2009.

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