NOW LIVE: Eyewitness News

TALE OF THE TAPE

Week 5: Tennessee Titans At Minnesota Vikings

Titans
Vikings
Tennessee Titans v Seattle Seahawks
Jacksonville Jaguars v Minnesota Vikings
Quarterback
The Titans are going to have to go with backup quarterback Matt Hasselbeck because Jake Locker’s left (non-throwing) shoulder won’t allow him to line up. Hasselbeck is clearly one of the most experienced backups and can throw short- and medium-range passes, but he can’t go downfield.
Winner Christian Ponder is one of the top stories of the early season as he has stepped in and become a solid leader for the Vikings. Ponder has the size, arm strength and athletic ability to become a star quarterback, but he still makes mistakes and has a long way to go.
Offense
The Titans have been waiting for speedy Chris Johnson to play like a star during the first few weeks of the season, and he finally hit it big with a 141-yard effort against the undefeated Texans. If Johnson can continue to run successfully against the Vikings, that will take a lot of pressure off of Hasselbeck.
Winner The Vikings were hoping that running back Adrian Peterson would return to solid form following last year’s ACL injury, but he has exceeded expectations. Peterson looks as strong as ever and will wear down a defense with his physical style. Percy Harvin is a big-play wideout who can break a game open.
Defense
Winner The Titans are somewhat undisciplined on defense. They like to go for the highlight-film kind of hit and that puts them at risk to missing tackles. That doesn’t work against good teams. Strong safety Jordan Babineaux is one of the most dependable tacklers on the team. He had 12 stops against the Texans.
Winner The Vikings are doing a solid job on defense under head coach Leslie Frazier. The Vikings attacked Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford consistently in Week Four and registered five sacks. Defensive end Jared Allen is once again the dominant pass rusher on the team.
Special Teams
The Titans are very confident in placekicker Rod Bironas, who has a strong leg and is very consistent. Punter Brett Kern averaged 46.6 yards on 7 punts against the Texans. He has a strong leg and is a good directional punter.
Winner The Vikings had the kind of game that special teams coaches dream of in the win over the Lions. Harvin returned the opening kickoff for 105 yards and a touchdown and they added a punt return for a score when Marcus Sherels ran 77 yards in the third quarter.

The Winner Is

Jacksonville Jaguars v Minnesota Vikings
Winner Vikings
4 out of 4

The Vikings are exceeding expectations because they are keeping mistakes to a minimum and taking advantage of mistakes by their opponents. They are brimming with confidence after their Week Three win over the 49ers and it may be too much to ask the Titans to come into Minnesota and get a win with their aging backup quarterback.

MORE TALES OF THE TAPE

  1. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
    Tale Of The Tape: Indianapolis Colts At New York Giants

    The Colts are going to have to shake off last week’s pounding at Pittsburgh, and that’s going to be one more test for Andrew Luck.

  2. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
    Tale Of The Tape: Baltimore Ravens At Pittsburgh Steelers

    Joe Flacco was not at his best in the Ravens’ Week Eight loss at Cincinnati, as he completed 17-of-34 passes for 195 yards with no touchdowns and two interceptions.

  3. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
    Tale Of The Tape: Oakland Raiders At Seattle Seahawks

    It’s been a difficult learning process for rookie quarterback Derek Carr, and the problems have been exacerbated by the lack of talent surrounding the signal caller.

See All Tales of the Tape
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 33,318 other followers