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. EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - SEPTEMBER 25:  Odell Beckham #13 of the New York Giants breaks a tackle by Josh Norman #24 of the Washington Redskins in the second half at MetLife Stadium on September 25, 2016 in East Rutherford, New Jersey.  (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) CHARLOTTE, NC - SEPTEMBER 25:   Cam Newton #1 of the Carolina Panthers runs the ball against Everson Griffen #97 and Tom Johnson #92 of the Minnesota Vikings in the 1st half during their game at Bank of America Stadium on September 25, 2016 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
    Week 4 Tale Of The Tape: New York Giants At Minnesota Vikings

    The Vikings defense has annihilated every opponent so far. Can they do it to the explosive Giants offense this week?

  2. KANSAS CITY, MO - SEPTEMBER 25: Center Mitch Morse #61 of the Kansas City Chiefs prepares to snap the ball to Alex Smith #11 at Arrowhead Stadium during the second quarter of the game against the New York Jets on September 25, 2016 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Peter Aiken/Getty Images) PHILADELPHIA, PA - SEPTEMBER 25: Quarterback  Ben Roethlisberger #7 of the Pittsburgh Steelers passes against  Bennie Logan #96 of the Philadelphia Eagles in the fourth quarter at Lincoln Financial Field on September 25, 2016 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Alex Goodlett/Getty Images)
    Week 4 Tale Of The Tape: Kansas City Chiefs At Pittsburgh Steelers

    The Chiefs and Steelers battle it out in a match-up of AFC playoff contenders.

  3. ARLINGTON, TX - SEPTEMBER 25:  Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys throws against the Chicago Bears in the fourth quarter at AT&T Stadium on September 25, 2016 in Arlington, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images) SEATTLE, WA - SEPTEMBER 25:  Running back Carlos Hyde #28 of the San Francisco 49ers rushes for a touchdown in the fourth quarter against the Seattle Seahawks at CenturyLink Field on September 25, 2016 in Seattle, Washington. The Seahawks defeated the 49ers 37-18.  (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)
    Week 4 Tale Of The Tape: Dallas Cowboys At San Francisco 49ers

    The Cowboys have been rolling with rookie QB Dak Prescott and RB Ezekiel Elliott. They look to continue that momentum this week.

See All Tales of the Tape

More From CBS Philly

Guide To Suburban Fall Golf
Sign Up Now!
Taz Goes Big!

Listen Live