Discussion in 'Tennessee Titans and NFL Talk' started by TitanJeff, Jan 10, 2009.
What can i do till 3:30? Would watch ESPN but i heard enough about the Steelers and Ravens.
I find it funny that the Titans have the best record in the league and have rested up and should be reasonably fresh, yet practically every analyst I've heard isn't giving them a chance against the Ravens. Hey, at least Chris Berman picked us
I dont like that it could be raining... if we cannot run on the Ravens it's going to be hard to throw in the rain with wet balls.
If I were the Ravens...
I'd use the big package and pound the rock til the Titans prove they can stop it. At least on 1st and 2nd down. Short passes to Mason and Heap to keep the chains moving on 3rd and medium/short. Use playaction to Mason on a 12 yard curl route for getting small chunks of yards (ala Miami).
Look for 2 things versus Titans D. First, on 3rd and very short, the Titans like to sell out...especially versus shortyardage/big formations. Take this opportunity to go up top or go for a 10-15 yard pass if the deep ball isn't open. Secondly, Titans typically play 4 coverages on 3rd and long. See if Schwartz goes against tendencies. If not...put Clayton in the slot on a 2 reciever side and have him run a deep post splitting our deep safeties. Bulluck will be dropping deep down the middle to make this a hard throw. They key is having Heap run a 10 yard in underneath this after Bulluck is cleared out. (Titans can defeat this by having Thornton man up Heap or some other kind of combo coverage mixing zone and man which should confuse Flacco). Vs Cover 3 Flacco should hit Mason on a 10-15 yard out. Finnegan will bail to cover the deep 3rd and the deep out will be open. The Chargers killed us with this in the second half last year after not being able to beat us with the skinny posts in the first half. Schwartz never adjusted. If the Titans play man coverage I'd still go with Mason on a deep curl but against Harper instead of Finnegan. Vs the Blitz Flacco needs to get rid of the ball either on a WR screen to Harper's side or a rb screen or hit Mason/Clayton/Heap on a quick slant. Being able to dial up plays against known coverages will give the Ravens opportunites for medium to large chunks of yards or to make first downs.
Pound the rock, win time of possesion and dictate when you want Flacco to throw and you're in good shape. Get an early lead and you're in even better shape. Having a lead is key since it takes pressure of your rookie QB and plays into a defense thast intercepts everyone!
Stuff the run, stuff the run, stuff the run. When CJ is in the game, keep him between the tackles and make sure the ILB's don't over run the play. Cj's biggest runs come when the MLB or OLB over run the cutback lane. Ravens D is very disciplined so this shouldn't be a problem. Vs the pass, make sure Leonard is on CJ in man or you have a zone defender very aware of him. Even better, bring up potential blitzers to the line so CJ is forced to do a check release...if he has to wait to see if he needs to pick up a blitzer, he can't outrun a LB down the field. When White is in the game, blitz the pass and crowd the LOS. Don't let White get started and he's a non-factor.
Ngata should be lined up over Harris all game. Control and dominate the C and force the Titans to give him help and you open up a lot of possibilities...especially with blitzes! We can also stem to different fronts and expect to get free rushers on the QB just confusing the Titans up front. Get a free rusher rushing only 4 and the Titans will have pressure and have 3 recievers covered by 7 defenders. Advantage Ravens. Stuff the run and force a fairly immobile Collins to throw it away or give an int opportunity.
Things that should scare the Ravens...
The Titans have a much better return game, FG kicker, and more playmakers on offense. Special teams and defense beat the Titans in the 2001 matchup. They can't afford the Titans to win the special teams battle. They can't afford the Titans to build a lead or the Ravens will be going against all of their advantages.
Things to watch for early - Are the Ravens able to run out of the BIG packages, the battle between Harris and Ngata, how well the Titans OL pickups the exotic fronts/rushers, how well the Titans run and how they use CJ AND how well the Ravens coverage units control the Titans returners.
If I were the Titans...
I would use a power running game with 3 RB's (White, CJ and a FB) and do 3 things. Use multiple counter plays where the Ravens LB's have to read...could use a power I and split CJ out to one side with 2 WR's on the other. Who's walking out with CJ...a LB or a S? Are the Ravens matching him with a CB and a LB/s on the slot WR? We can force all sorts of mismatches while dictate matchups. Additionally we could go 3 rb's and 2 TE's and able to split different personel out CJ or Scaife or both TE's...or give up one TE for a WR. Lots of different looks. Vs our BIG set...2 TE's and 2 rb's and a fb, they need to figure out what personel to matchup with. When we see what they do, we can decide what we do. Keeping White and a FB keeps the blst fb lead up the middle a real threat while there is also the option of faking that a flipping a toss or swing pass to CJ. The Ravens don't have the people to man up both TE's and CJ when they have no CB's on the field. If they keep a CB or 2 on the field it favors the Titans run game.
Since the Ravens CB's play a lot of zone and their cb's are small, bubble screens to a TE or CJ should be helpful in getting more blockers on the outside and giving us a chance for a big play...but blocking on the outside will be hugely important as will catching the ball. A tipped pass or missed block could lead to an int returned for a TD.
The Titans need to find ways to get CJ in space. Split him out wide and let him run a drag across the field with a TE or WR dragging opposite him. The other player can 'rub' off his defender vs man coverage. Vs zones, bubble and rb screens can be effective if we block well. Fake handoff up the middle and tosses to CJ outside can be effective is our WR can get a crack back on the OLB putting CJ in space vs a smaller CB one on one. The fake handoff up the middle should keep ILB pursuit slow.
CJ needs 20 touches in this game and I think we'll see a couple of big plays. He needs to hold onto the ball as well as catch it cleanly.
The Titans should take a page out of the 2001 game and use a short passing game...mainly to the TE's to march down the field for early points. Getting a lead will help the Titans and hurt the Ravens. It will also give the Titans confidence and keep the crowd revved while putting doubt into the Ravens offense and putting more pressure on Flacco. Another reason for this is we don't know how long AH or KVB will be able to play.
The Titans also need to pound the rock and tire out the Ravens D. Winning TOP will be key for 4th qrtr success. Furthermore, the Titans shouldn't be afraid to occasionally run on 3rd and long or take some shots down the field if given 1 on 1 coverage. But success on first down is critical as is trying to stay out of 3rd and 10's. KC should not hold the ball...throw it away whenever necessary and live to fight another day. A push should be a win for the Titans given their superior return game so trading punts is good.
Our WR's need to CATCH THE DAMN BALL. This is not a game for bobbling or double clutching a catch. If you can catch it...catch it with feet in bounds. If you can't catch it, break up the INT. If they catch it, make the tackle!!! This could be crucial to winning this game! And when 1 on 1...win the battle. While Rolle is fairly tall and athletic, Fabian Washington is short. Gage should be able to go over him as should BJ.
Dictate to the defense. If you allow them to put you ointo 3rd and long, they can dictate what you can do by what they do. However, the Ravens like to match personel to down and distance...ala going 2 DL/5LB's on 3rd and long. If you can get a first down with say a 2 TE 2 WR and CJ personel-wise, go hurry up to keep that personel on the field. Then run on them. Of course we don't want to speed up the clock, but just prevent them from subbing people out. Additionally, anytime they sub Ngata out of the game go hurry up to keep him off the field and force them to burn a TO to get him back on. Ideally, we can get him off the field with a FB and White still on the field. This is our best chance to pound the rock up the middle.
Frequently give Flacco a blitz look on 3rd and medium/long without blitzing...but confusing their blocking schemes can give our 4 rushers a better chance. Use a lot of fronts they are not used to. The Titans have primarily only used standard over and under fronts. Not only switch up coverages frequently, but hopefully they have used some of these weeks to put in some trap coverages Flacco will have a tough time figuring out. On 3rd and 10 I'd double cover Mason when he's on Harpers side with Hope playing underneath. On first downs, I'd occasionally try and guess when Flacco is gonna go playaction and double the WR's subtley over the top and tell the corners to play the underneath curl route or deep out. The other way to go on 3rd and long is to play combo coverages mixing zone and man. Man up Mason or Heap and play zone everywhere else or play one side of the field zone and the other man. Making it harder for Flacco to read the defense is key to sacking him and causing INT's.
Need to be VERY careful against their big set. While we need to stop the run, we need to be ready for them to try big plays out of playaction from it. Don't sell out on 3rd and short unless necessary...and in those cases matchup Bulluck on Heap and Finny on Mason man to man.
Controlled aggression...can not draw personal fouls or pass interference or roughing the passer!
Overall, can't be predictable, need to win first down and get them off the field on 3rd down. The Titans D plays best in short spurts. Our great run D can wear down and when it does, it stops our pass rush. If they can get our 4 DL playing the run, Falcco will have time in playaction to make big plays. Strap on the chin straps...either we're gonna knock them out or they're gonna knock us out. We're rested, they're banged up. Time for a few body blows and then the knockout!!!
Need to play great special teams!
Could be a sloppy game for us if we cannot run the ball early. Fisher will waste the 1st half trying to force the run and could result in a lot of punts and loss of yardage. And those quick passes to CJ do not work, he gets nailed every time.
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ITS ON BALTIMORE!
you do know with it raining this game cannot be played the same as it was planned. now everything changes for both teams.
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