Two weeks ago the Tennessee Titans were 7-5, right in the thick of not only the AFC Wild Card race, but also the AFC South race as well. The Titans were coming off two consecutive victories when they hosted the New Orleans Saints in Week 14, a game which they came within a couple of plays of winning. Going into Week 15 the Titans were 7-6 and still had a decent shot of making the playoffs as a Wild Card. Luckily for them, they were going on the road to play a 0-13 Indianapolis Colts team who had about as much life in them as a dead fish.
Unfortunately for the Titans, the Colts woke up in Week 15, decimating a suddenly listless looking Tennessee team. Suddenly, the Titans are in red alert mode, with their playoff chances currently hanging by the skin of their teeth. While the Titans are technically only one game out of the sixth AFC Wild Card spot, they are also behind Cincinnati who is tied with the Jets at 8-6, and tied with three other 7-7 teams. For the Titans to make the playoffs the Bengals lose out, the Jets need to lose at least once more and the Raiders need to lose at least one game. While all of this can happen, it's not exactly controlling your own destiny this late in the season.
The good news for the Titans is that they take on a Jacksonville Jaguars time in Week 16 (Tennessee takes on the Texans in Week 17, who could be vying for a bye and conference championship, so it's best to take this one week at a time for them) that has looked absolutely terrible the last month or so. The Jaguars have had a forgettable season, and outside of beating the lowly Buccaneers two weeks ago, haven't had much to cheer for in a good long time. Of course, the fact that the Titans lost to the Colts last week makes this matchup a lot harder to predict.
It wasn't just that the Titans lost in Indianapolis (any given Sunday, right?), it's how they lost. Matt Hassleback didn't just have the worst game of the year, he had the worst game in years. He was so bad that he got benched in the third quarter after his second interception for Jake Locker, who did play much better, even throwing a touchdown pass. While you could say that the Colts played good enough to win, the Titans looked listless on both offense and defense, which is always a concern this late in the season. Instead of fighting hard and pulling out a victory, the Titans seemed lost.
There hasn't been a decision yet on who will start at quarterback for the Titans Saturday afternoon, though rumor has it that Locker may get the nod. Even if Hassleback does start, if he shows any shades of how he played last weekend expect him to be yanked. Hassleback arguably has the shortest chain of anyone quarterback playing this weekend.
The good news for Tennessee is that Jacksonville has been a mess all season, save for Maurice Jones-Drew, who again win's the "Best Player on the Worst Team" award for like the fifth straight season. If the Titans defense is caught napping like it did last week, Drew may have one of his biggest games of the season (the Titans run defense isn't very good either). In other words, if you have Drew on your fantasy team this week, you are going to want to start him.
Offensively for the Jaguars, expect Blaine Gabbert to have another sub-200 yard passing game. While he can be dangerous, you can expect Drew to either beat the Titans single-highhandedly, or for the Titans to be able to stay alive in the AFC playoff race.