Hamilton Herald Masthead


Front Page - Friday, September 8, 2023

Four Downs: Titans vs. Saints

The regular season is finally here, and the Titans open the 2023 campaign on the road at the Superdome in New Orleans against a revamped Saints team that they might be catching at the right time with Derek Carr in his first game at quarterback and Alvin Kamara out due to suspension. Let’s look at the keys for the Titans:

First down

Establish their offensive identity. The Titans have a new offensive coordinator in Tim Kelly, who is implementing a different, faster-paced system that should help a questionable offensive line protect Ryan Tannehill. However, the bread and butter is still Derrick Henry and the run game. The Titans need to let Henry do what he does until the revamped passing game comes around.

Second down

Keep Tannehill upright. Ryan Tannehill can still be an effective quarterback if given time to throw and weapons to throw to. The Titans added DeAndre Hopkins, and believe Treylon Burks could be poised for a breakout year. The biggest thing is to protect Tannehill and let him find his receivers.

Third down

Let the defense work. Jeffery Simmons and the defensive front seven looked dominant at times in the preseason. If they can stay healthy and jell early, this group could lead the way. They need to take advantage and create a key turnover or two.

Fourth down

No special teams flubs. As mentioned earlier, the Titans have 11 rookies, many of whom will be on the special teams units. They also have a new kicker in veteran Nick Folk. The Titans have to avoid miscues like penalties, missed field goals and surrendering big returns.