Tennessee Titans vs. Pittsburgh Steelers preview


The 2009 NFL regular season starts off with a bang as the Tennessee Titans travel to Heinz Field to take on the Pittsburgh Steelers in a battle for early bragging rights to AFC supremacy.

Last year, the Titans seized home-field advantage throughout the AFC playoffs with a statement 31-14 win over the Steelers. Unfortunately, the grudge match in the AFC Title game that wasn’t meant to be never materialized, thanks to the hated Ravens.

It’s only one game in the marathon also known as the NFL regular season, but Thursday’s opening night battle will likely jumpstart one team’s possible journey to Miami next February.

Let’s preview this marquee matchup, shall we? 

The Albert Haynesworth-less era begins

Heading into the 2009 NFL season, in the minds of many, the biggest question mark surrounding the Titans is whether or not they will be able to cope without the presence of Fat Albert. Against the Steelers, we’ll soon find out whether or not #92 will be missed.

We should expect the Steelers to test the Titans’ ability to stop the run early and often. In the passing game, “Big Ben” is likely to take a few shots downfield as he performs his mandatory Houdini-act (thanks to a putrid offensive line) by trying to escape the grasps of relentlessly pursuing defenders.

Of course, we’ve seen what the Titan defense is capable of against the Steelers without Big Al last year, as Jason Jones and others stepped up in his absence in the team’s dominating defeat of the Steelers. However, that reality appears to be lost in the minds of national prognosticators, who are suggesting that Al’s departure will lead to a less-than-stellar regular season for the Titans.

Will the Titan defense prove the critics wrong by playing well without Haynesworth, or will a poor performance against Pittsburgh serve as fuel to the naysayers’ fires?

Calling all Titan-playmakers!

As a result of lingering injuries to newcomers Nate Washington and Jared Cook, the Titans may be missing a few offensive weapons against the Steelers. If they’re unable to go, someone’s going to have to step up and make some plays on offense.

Making plays is exactly what Justin Gage did against the Steelers last December, as he caught 5 passes for 104 yards and a score. Hopefully, Justin can come through with another strong game against Pittsburgh.

Of course, making plays is sophomore sensation Chris Johnson’s specialty. The running back formerly/currently known as Dash is a threat to take it to the house on any given play, so it’s paramount if he can break a big play or two on Thursday night.

Last but not least, rookie Kenny Britt will be looking to get his NFL career off to a great start by making an impact in the Titans’ passing game. With his impressive size and speed, look for a Kerry Collins’ deep pass or two in the rook’s direction against the Steelers.

Dont believe the hype

One of the biggest themes surrounding Thursday’s grudgematch has nothing to do with the game itself and everything to do with the stomping of a yellow towel.

In last year’s Titan win, LenDale White and others joyfully placed their foot signatures on the Steelers’ beloved terrible towel, prompting an immediate response from Steeler Nation who overwhelmingly voiced their disapproval.

I’m sure the events of last year will play a big role in the Terror Dome-type atmosphere that will likely await the Titans at Heinz Field on Thursday. Everytime LenDale White touches the football, Steeler fans will be undoubtedly booing him until their lungs almost collapse.

However, at the end of the day, the team that emerges victorious will win because of what took place on the football field, not because of the Terrible Towel controversy.

Who will emerge victorious, you ask? I’ll take the Titans in a 20-17 squeaker

So what do you think, guys? Any thoughts/predictions for Thursday’s titanic matchup with the Steelers?    


20 Responses to “Tennessee Titans vs. Pittsburgh Steelers preview”

  1. caleb Says:

    The defense is going to prove that FAT Albert is no missing link and they will continue where they left off last year with Big Ben. Do I hear a big “SACK”!!!!! over my TV speakers…. It’s going to be a great game and I can’t wait until Thursday.

  2. Sannitizer Says:

    9/11/05 Tennessee opened in Pittsburgh, result: Steelers 34-7. The game is not being played at LP Field so I doubt Titans “squeak” one out.

  3. BurheadTitans Says:

    The ’05 game was at the on set of our rebuilding years so it was a given we would lose that game. I won’t sit here and say it will be easy but I still think the Titans will come out on top. Either way how can you beat this opening game? Probably two of the best teams in the AFC going at it.

  4. Alvin Says:

    Sannitizer – I can’t believe you would bring up an O5 game…wow
    Still this is going to be a very tough game. The Steelers are like 9-1 for prime time games under Tommlin. But in the end the better team usually wins and the Titans are the better team.
    Titans 24
    Steelers 13

  5. Bob Loblaw Says:

    Great game to open the season – higher scoring than most think. Titans’ run-d has looked decent, but haven’t been able to get pressure on the QB. Likely without Cook and Washington, and the periodic tendency of Scaife, Gage, Johnson & co to develop a case of the dropsies doesn’t bode well for the Titans. Close game, but Steelers win 27-23.

  6. kp Says:

    I say the Steelers are going to slam the Titans. This game is not going to be close. The Titans are going to pay for stomping on our towels. LenDale White needs to shut his mouth and play ball.
    GO STEELERS!!!!!!!

  7. Johnathan Says:

    Oh shut up about the freaking towel. Wow. It is a piece of fabric. Its like if a dog chewed up a stuffed animal… You don’t kill the dog because of it… It is nothing but a toy…

  8. kp Says:

    It may just be a towel to you but to us it is much more. The Titans players are very disrespectful and I hope they are punished on the field for it.

  9. kevin .b Says:

    Hey derx ,how did the titan players get those piss yellow towles to stomp on any ways ?? Did they beat up one of the steeler fans in the third row and snatch it away from the bloody hands? and if so do you think we can do to that fan one more time ……….

  10. Andrew Strickert Says:

    I’m looking forward to the Roos-Harrison matchup. Also to the Finnegan-Ward matchup. It looks like Kevin Mawae will have a tough time against Hampton. I see the key as the Titans d-line, which must be effective against a Steelers’ o-line that has some problems.

  11. Morgan Says:

    KP, it was not all titans players who were disrespecting the terrible towel that day, it was only afew. Dont try to bring down the whole titans roster because a few teammates stomped towels into the ground that were thrown at them by the steelers fans.
    As for the matchup, i think the titans take it in a 34-17 victory. Call me crazy but i think the
    D-line is going to look great and the offence will push the ball effectively down the field.
    Steelers play primarily a zone defence with a small mix of man-to-man, i want to see how Kerry can read, react, and throw as the steelers show different blitz’s. If Kerry can hang in the pocket with time, this game is going to be Titans all the way.

  12. Markus Says:

    Titans win 20-13. Both offenses will struggle…they take longer to evolve than defenses. Also, I don’t think the Steelers are going to run the ball as much as everyone thinks. I think they will call passing plays 2-1. Steelers fans: Whats the deal w/ Mendenhall? Is the Pitt running attack going to resemble the Titans at all? He’s a beast!
    Alas, GO TITANS! Great game!!!! Football is here!

  13. Drexel Perry Says:

    I’m expecting a close game between two teams who should be among the league’s elite in 2009.
    As always, thanks for dropping by to share your thoughts guys.
    Can’t wait until tomorrow night!

  14. Bruce Says:

    when the steelers when i cant wait to hear from u
    steelers are going to win 30-14
    ur going to catch the me with a titan towel and use it as a toilet paper

  15. Morgan Says:

    Bruce what the hell are you trying to type here. I seriously dont know if i should make fun of you for your terrible english skills or feel sorry for you for you lack of intelligence. lol classic steelers fan. I dont need to read the next post to see how steelers fan answered, Bruce’s post answers all my questions. Ahhhahahahhahhaha thanks for the chuckle Bruce

  16. Johnathan Says:

    I have to agree with Morgan. I am going to give you he benefit of the doubt and say you are under 10 years old…

  17. Jared Says:

    Ah good, this is a true case of the pot calling the kettle black. Look at your second line there Morgan! You said, “…feel sorry for you for ‘you’ lack of intellegence”? Wow, I am sure glad that we have someone who is a complete retard at the English language making fun of someone else’s petty mistake at spelling! Eat your own advice boy! GO STEELERS!!!!!!

  18. TXCG Says:


  19. Morgan Says:

    You see mine was a missed stroke of the “r” key, something that happens everyday. Only a complete retard wouldnt see that. So far thats 3 Steelers fans that have posted, two complete retards. Two out of three, not bad for Steelers fans.
    GO TITANS!!!!!!!!

  20. Bob Loblaw Says:

    “Wow, I am sure glad that we have someone who is a complete retard at the English language making fun of someone else’s petty mistake at spelling!”
    For somebody making a pot-kettle reference, you certainly look like a ____ pot yourself. You might wish to say “someone who is a complete retard” or “someone who doesn’t properly use the English language”. You don’t say that someone is a retard “at” something.
    You might also wish to say “someone else’s spelling mistake” – “mistake at spelling” is cumbersome and suggests that you are attempting to come across as intelligent when in fact you reside at the bottom tail of the distribution.

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