Titans to Host Jets Sunday at LP Field

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. — This week the Tennessee Titans (2-11) host the New York Jets (2-11). The late afternoon kickoff at LP Field (capacity 69,143) is scheduled for 3:05 p.m. CST on Sunday, Dec. 14.

THE BROADCAST

This week's game will be televised regionally on CBS, including Nashville affiliate WTVF NewsChannel 5. Andrew Catalon will handle play-by-play duties, while Steve Beuerlein and Steve Tasker will serve as analysts.

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, gameday host Rhett Bryan and sideline reporter Jonathan Hutton.

TITANS LOOK TO GET BACK IN WIN COLUMN

The Titans have three games remaining on their 2014 slate. Following this week's contest, they have a short week to prepare for a Thursday night matchup with the Jacksonville Jaguars, and the season concludes at home versus the Indianapolis Colts.

Last week the Titans hosted the New York Giants at LP Field, trying to put a stop to a six-game losing skid. But the Giants, who themselves were in the midst of seven consecutive losses, were less than charitable to the Titans' cause. The visitors scored the game's first 30 points and left Nashville with a 36-7 victory.

The Giants defense forced three turnovers, sacked Titans quarterbacks eight times, and allowed the Titans to run only one play inside the red zone. The Titans' lone touchdown came not by their offense but on an interception return by rookie defensive back Marqueston Huff.

Already plagued by injuries, Tennessee suffered more personnel losses during the game, none more notable than quarterback Zach Mettenberger. Less than five minutes into the fourth quarter, the rookie signal caller was sacked by linebacker Devon Kennard and stayed on the turf. He was diagnosed with a right shoulder injury for the second consecutive week and was replaced by Jake Locker.

Mettenberger has started the last six games, becoming only the third rookie quarterback in franchise history to record at least six starts (Dan Pastorini, Vince Young). His season totals include 107-of-179 passing for 1,412 yards with eight touchdowns and seven interceptions. His 83.4 passer rating is the best among NFL rookies in 2014 with at least one start.

Locker, who started four out of the team's first five games in 2014, has completed 80 of his 135 passes for 936 yards, five touchdowns and seven interceptions. The former first-round pick has 22 career starts in four seasons.

THE JETS

The Jets have an identical record to the Titans after dropping their last three games at the Buffalo Bills (Nov. 24), against the Miami Dolphins (Dec. 1) and last week at the Minnesota Vikings (Dec. 7).

Against the Vikings, the Jets forced overtime in the frigid Minneapolis climate after Nick Folk made his fifth field goal with 23 seconds remaining in regulation. However, the Vikings scored on an 87-yard pass in the extra period to win 30-24.

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The Jets are in their sixth season under head coach Rex Ryan, who was named to the post in January 2009. From 2009 through the 2013 season, the Jets ranked second in the NFL in total defense and first in passing defense.

In 2014, the Jets are ranked seventh in overall defense entering Week 15. They are fifth in rushing defense and tied for 16th against the pass.

One of the Jets' featured offensive weapons is running back Chris Johnson, who joined the Jets during the 2014 offseason after playing his first six NFL seasons with the Titans. The third-leading rusher in Titans/Oilers history, Johnson was selected by the Titans with the 24th overall selection in the 2008 NFL Draft. He totaled 7,965 yards and 50 rushing touchdowns during his time in Tennessee, a period in which only Adrian Peterson had more rushing yards than him. Johnson set the NFL record with six career touchdown runs of 80 yards or longer, and he authored 35 career 100-yard rushing games in a Titans uniform.

Johnson's 2014 totals include 125 carries for 558 yards and a touchdown. He shares the tailback duties with Chris Ivory (714 yards), and together they have helped the Jets build the second-ranked rushing attack in the NFL.

U.S. MARINE CORPS TOYS FOR TOTS DRIVE

Prior to the game, fans are encouraged to participate in the annual U.S. Marine Corps Toys for Tots Drive. New, unwrapped toys can be dropped off with members of the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve stationed outside of the gates at LP Field. All toys collected during the drive will be used in the Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots program and distributed to children in Middle Tennessee.

SERIES HISTORY

This is the 43rd all-time meeting between the Titans and Jets in 55 seasons. The Titans are 24-17-1 in the series, including 1-0 in the playoffs. This is the sixth time in the last eight seasons the teams have played and the third consecutive season in which they have met at LP Field.

The Titans have won the last two games, including a Monday night game on Dec. 17, 2012. The Titans forced five total Jets turnovers—four interceptions and one fumble—and Chris Johnson set a franchise record with a 94-yard touchdown run in the 14-10 victory.

Then, on Oct. 6, 2013, the Titans hosted the Jets and won 38-13. They scored 28 points off turnovers and totaled five sacks. On offense, Jake Locker passed for 149 and three touchdowns prior to leaving the game with hip and knee injuries.

The last time the team's met on Jets home turf was at the Meadowlands on Sept. 27, 2009. The Titans came back from an early 14-point deficit to take a 17-14 lead in the third quarter. However, four turnovers, including two interceptions and two fumbles on special teams, were too untimely to overcome, and the Jets prevailed 24-17.

The Jets, like the then-Houston Oilers, were charter members of the American Football League. From the league's founding in 1960 through the 1962 season, they played as the New York Titans before being renamed the Jets for the 1963 season. With the exception of 1967, the Jets and Oilers played twice each season from 1960-69, and the Oilers won the first six meetings in the series.

In 1991, the Oilers began a string of six consecutive victories against the Jets, including a 17-10 victory in a 1991 AFC Wild Card Game.

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