Both Seahawks And Titans Rule The Turnover Battle
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By Matthew Asher
After being unable to produce a comeback against Indy, the 4-1 Seahawks will head back to the friendly confines of CenturyLink Field to take on the 3-2 Tennessee Titans for their last of four straight AFC South games.
Fortunately for the Seahawks, unlike last week where Indy ranked in the top 10 in several key categories, the Titans (at least statistically) rank nowhere near as good as Indianapolis does, especially with Jake Locker likely out for a month of action.
Offensively, the Titans are nothing special. They rank in the bottom 10 of the league in both total yards and passing yards. The 318 total yards and 201.2 passing yards gained by Tennessee each game both rank as the seventh least so far this season. The Titans do rank in the top half of the league in both points scored and rushing yards, but neither are in the top 10. The 23 points scored and the 116.8 rushing yards gained each game rank 15th and 13th, respectively.
Jake Locker started the season as the Titan’s quarterback, but didn’t play last week against the Kansas City Chiefs as he sustained a hip injury in Week 4 against the Jets. In his four games as the signal caller, he’s completed 62.2 percent of his throws for 721 yards, six touchdowns and no interceptions for a respectable quarterback rating of 99.0.
Ryan Fitzpatrick came in for Locker in Week 4 and started the game last week. His stats are much less impressive. Fitzpatrick has completed less than half his throws for 355 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions for a pretty ugly quarterback rating of 69.7.
So far only three Titans have eclipsed both the 10-reception and 100-yard receiving mark. Kendall Wright leads the team in receptions with 26 and has gained 266 yards and one touchdown. Nate Washington has 22 receptions and leads the team with 362 yards and two touchdowns. Delanie Walker has picked up 16 receptions for 156 yards and two touchdowns as well.
Tennessee’s ground game may statistically rank higher than their passing attack, but it’s hasn’t been especially dominating. Chris Johnson has carried the ball 94 times for 294 yards, averaging just 3.1 yards a carry, but he has yet to score a touchdown on the ground this season. Jackie Battle is the other Titan to eclipse the 100-yard rushing mark with 126 yards on 35 carries and a touchdown to go with it.
If you’re wondering why Tennessee has a winning record, look no further than their lack of turnovers. Currently at plus-eight, only the undefeated Kansas City Chiefs have a better turnover ratio. Seattle is right behind the Titans at plus-seven.
Winning the turnover battle has allowed the Titans defense to rank in the top 10 of the league in several key categories. The 321.2 total yards given up as well as the 218 passing yards surrendered are the ninth and 10th best in the league, respectively. Their rushing defense isn’t bad either, allowing just 103.2 yards a game, the 14th least. And when it comes to points given up, Tennessee’s 19 points a game is the 11th stingiest.
Kickoff is scheduled for 1:05 pm PDT.
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Matthew Asher is a freelance journalist. From an early age, sports have played a major role in his life. He graduated from Emory University with a B.A. in Journalism. After college he spent 2 years working with CNN Sports and still occasionally writes sports articles for several publications both in the United States and Canada. His work can be found on Examiner.com.