NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The Titans (3-1) carry a three-game winning streak into Pittsburgh this week, as they travel to face the Steelers (2-2) at Heinz Field (capacity 65,500). Kickoff is scheduled for noon CDT on Sunday, Oct. 9.
Two of the NFL's top defenses entering Week 5 will be on display. The Titans rank first in the NFL in scoring defense (14.0 points per game by opponents), first in opponents' yards per play (4.36) and seventh in overall defense (299.8 yards per contest). No team has scored more than 16 points this season against the Titans. Meanwhile, the Steelers are second in total defense (277.0 yards per game) and fifth in scoring defense (18.0 points per game).
This week's matchup is the 74th all-time meeting between the two franchises, which makes Pittsburgh the Titans' most recurring opponent (Cincinnati Bengals, 73). The Steelers own a 43-30 advantage in the series, including victories in the two most recent games, played in 2009 and 2010.
This week's game will be televised regionally on CBS, including Nashville affiliate WTVF NewsChannel 5. Greg Gumbel will handle play-by-play duties, while Dan Dierdorf will provide analysis.
The Titans Radio Network, including Nashville flagship 104.5 The Zone, will broadcast the game across the Mid-South with the "Voice of the Titans" Mike Keith, analyst Frank Wycheck, sideline reporter Cody Allison and gameday host Larry Stone.
Additionally, Sports USA will carry the national radio broadcast. Bob Fitzgerald (play-by-play), Ross Tucker (analyst) and Tony Graziani (sideline reporter) will have the call.
BIG PLAYS KEEP TITANS IN WIN COLUMN
The Titans used big plays in the passing game and on defense to defeat the Browns 31-13 last week at Cleveland.
Matt Hasselbeck completed 10 of 20 passes for 220 yards, three touchdowns and one interception (108.3 passer rating). His longest pass of the game—and tied for the second-longest pass of his career—was an 80-yard touchdown to tight end Jared Cook. Hasselbeck also completed a 57-yard pass to wide receiver Nate Washington.
Running back Chris Johnson gained 101 yards on 23 carries (4.4 avg.), reaching the 100-yard mark for the 25th time in his career.
Defensively, the Titans held the Browns to 13 points despite 40 completions on 61 pass attempts by Colt McCoy—both single-game records against the Titans/Oilers. But McCoy's lone interception was one of the game's biggest plays. In the third quarter, safety Jordan Babineaux picked off a McCoy pass and raced 97 yards on the return for a touchdown.
Hasselbeck, who the Titans signed as an unrestricted free agent from the Seahawks on July 29, arguably is off to the best start of his career. His season totals include 1,152 yards, eight touchdowns, three interceptions and a passer rating of 104.7. The yardage total ranks second in franchise history through the first four games of a season, trailing only Warren Moon's 1,344 yards in Weeks 1¬–4 of 1990. Hasselbeck also has more touchdown passes through the first four weeks of 2011 than at the same point in any other season in his 13-year career.
The Steelers, who have played three of their first four games on the road, enter this week on the heels of a 17-10 loss at Houston. They rushed for 118 yards in the game, but quarterback Ben Roethlisberger was sacked five times and intercepted once in the loss. Texans tailback Arian Foster scored the game-winning touchdown on a 42-yard run in the fourth quarter.
The Steelers opened the season with a loss at Baltimore but then won consecutive games at home against Seattle and on the road versus Indianapolis. This will be their third of four consecutive games against AFC South opponents.