TALE OF THE TAPE

Week 7: Tennessee Titans At Buffalo Bills

Titans
Bills
Quarterback
The Titans made the most of their prime time home game with the Pittsburgh Steelers and came away with the comeback victory. Much of the credit has to go to veteran backup quarterback Matt Hasselbeck who completed 25-of-44 passes for 290 yards. Hasselbeck will take what the defense gives him and that could be quite a bit against the Bills.
Winner The Bills are coming off a tough 3-game stretch against the Patriots (loss), 49ers (loss) and Cardinals (overtime victory) and should be stoked to play a winnable game at home. Ryan Fitzpatrick is usually a much more dangerous quarterback at home, especially if he can get off to a good start. Fitzpatrick reads defenses well and he is an accurate short- and medium-range passer.
Offense
Winner On paper, the Titans have quite a few offensive weapons and they should be a dangerous offensive team. However, the Titans don’t perform up to their talent level on anything more than an occasional basis. Running back Chris Johnson is the biggest mystery. He has explosive speed but rarely lives up to his talent. Kenny Britt is a big-play receiver but he makes too many mistakes.
The Bills want to attack with the running game. They certainly have a solid two-headed ground game with Fred Jackson and C.J. Spiller. Stevie Johnson is a big-play wideout but he is not overly dependable. Tight end Scott Chandler is a decent complementary receiver who can find the dead spots in the zone.
Defense
Winner The Titans came away with a much-needed Week Six win against the Steelers, but it was not like the defense shut down Ben Roethlisberger. The Titans gave up 363 passing yards and the secondary is quite vulnerable. The Titans had given up 30 points or more in five straight games to open the season before holding the Steelers to 23 points.
Winner The Bills have had plenty of their own problems on the defensive end and the biggest issue is a secondary that struggles to cover and a front seven that has been exposed against the running game. The Bills can improve on defense if Mario Williams asserts himself as he did against the Cardinals in Week Six with 2.0 sacks. Free safety Jairus Byrd had two interceptions in the win over Arizona.
Special Teams
Winner Rob Bironas is one of the most consistent field goal kickers in the league and head coach Mike Munchak will feel confident if Bironas has to make a field goal to win the game, as he did against the Steelers in Week Six. Punter Brett Kern has dropped 12 of his 30 punts inside the 20.
The Bills also have confidence in Rian Lindell, and he came through with the game-winning field goal in overtime. Shawn Powell shanked a punt late in the fourth quarter and that nearly cost the Bills a chance to win the game against Arizona.

The Winner Is

Winner Titans
3 out of 4

The Bills were much better defensively against the Cardinals than they were in the two preceding weeks against New England and San Francisco as Mario Williams showed some life rushing the passer. Both of these teams struggle on defense and that may give the homestanding Bills an edge with Ryan Fitzpatrick at quarterback.

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