But there are some reasons for concern. We know the Eagles have had some road struggles, especially on defense. And while the Titans might not be viewed as a juggernaut, they ARE 2-1 with their one loss coming to an undefeated Dolphins team in a one-possession game.
With that said, if you’re among those who might not be feeling super confident in the Eagles for some reason, today’s post might have you feeling a little better about the reigning Super Bowl champs.
BGN already took some time to chat with Music City Miracles in order to preview this week’s matchup. (You can read that here.) Today, we’re back with three reasons why each team might lose. This format forces us to consider each team’s weaknesses, rather than just being homers.
1. Marcus Mariota is still limited and can’t throw the ball down the field.
We still don’t know the status of Marcus Mariota’s elbow/hand. Everyone is saying he feels better this week, but what else are they going to say when they have no choice but to run him out there even if he is only at 75%. If he is still close to 75% and can’t push the ball down the field, this offense could be in for a very long day. The Eagles rank 11th in short pass DVOA on the season.
They are also 2nd in rush defense DVOA on the season, so it isn’t like the Titans will just be able to line up and run it at the Eagles 40+ times. They will need to get creative with the offense for the 3rd straight week. I am concerned that they don’t have any surprising wrinkles left.
2. Carson Wentz is able to take advantage of a Titans’ defense that has been giving up the deep ball.
The Titans defense ranks 24th in the league against deep passes. Malcolm Butler has been particularly victimized by the deep ball. He gave up a 75-yard touchdown to Kenny Stills in week 1 and a 39-yard touchdown to Will Fuller in week 2. Wentz probably knocked off most of his rust last week. A guy like Nelson Agholor could get loose for a couple of deep passes.
3. The Titans are in a let down spot after winning 2 hard-fought division games that no one expected them to win.
The Titans have had an unbelievable start to the season with a 7+ hour game in Miami, a week 2 game without Mariota and their top 3 offensive tackles and a week 3 game in Jacksonville where Mariota had to play at far less than 100% after Blaine Gabbert suffered a concussion in the first quarter. Somehow they are 2-1, but that is a lot for any team. They are feeling good after 2 division wins and are essentially playing with house money in this one. It feels like it could be a classic letdown spot.