OK, I'll admit I had to dig deep to find three reasons for optimism for the Titans this week, coming off a shutout loss to Houston. In fact, they haven't scored an offensive touchdown in the past two games. But the show must go on, and even though the Titans mailed it in in Houston on Sunday, we would never do that at TitanInsider.
Three reasons to be happy
1. The Titans are still in the division race. Riding a four-game losing streak, the one-game deficit feels like a chasm. But the reality is, if the Titans can win two home games over Jacksonville and Indianapolis in the next week, they can lead the AFC South. And that is what the coaching staff needs to sell the players on, in a season that is in shambles after a 5-2 start.
2. Cortland Finnegan escaped a suspension. Coach Jeff Fisher said he felt Finnegan was playing his best football over the past four weeks. I'm not exactly sure that's the case, but the Titans do need a focused Finnegan if they are going to compete over the final five games.
3. Kerry Collins is probably back in the saddle. Rusty Smith looked very green on Sunday, and with Collins' calf injury getting better, chances are the veteran will be back under center, greatly improving the Titans' chances of competing this Sunday against the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Three reasons to be concerned
1. Are the players still buying in? Fisher denies that the team is splintering or quit on Sunday, but with the lack of discipline with the penalties, turnovers, dropped passes, missed tackles and Finnegan's antics, it sure looked like the the Titans were in disarray on Sunday in dropping their fourth in a row.
2. The defensive line has issues. Injuries galore have hit the strongest part of Tennessee's defense. On Sunday, the Titans finished the game with just five healthy defensive linemen. Tony Brown's knee is very problematic, and Sen'Derrick Marks suffered an ankle injury on an apparent cut block. At least Jason Jones and perhaps Dave Ball could be back this week.
3.The two biggest weapons barely saw the football. Chris Johnson had seven carries for five yards, and Randy Moss had his “best” day as a Titans with three catches for a mere 23 yards. Yes, the Titans were hamstrung with a rookie quarterback in Rusty Smith, but they have to keep their two best offensive players involved in the game.