Oakland Raiders at Tennessee Titans
Time: NOON CT (CBS)
Betting odds c/o 5dimes
The Oakland Raiders fell 35-28 to the Atlanta Falcons in Week 2 after a Week 1 victory over the New Orleans Saints. This week brings a tightly contested matchup with the Tennessee Titans, and NFL oddsmakers are setting the line EVEN for this matchup which will air at Noon Central on CBS.
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Last week the Raiders lost on a deflected 8-yard TD pass mid-way through the fourth quarter as the go-ahead score held for the remainder of the quarter. Derek Carr was sensational in the loss, throwing 34 of 45 for 299 yards and three TDs while not incurring any interceptions and only being sacked once. The Raiders were also good on the ground, where it picked up 155 yards on 25 carries, led by Latavious Murray’s 57 yards on eight carries. Murray scored the lone Raiders’ rushing TD, and Oakland averaged 6.2 yards per carry as a team.
The wideouts got live: Six Raiders receivers finished with 25 yards or more, and Amari Cooper had 71 yards on five catches. Clive Walford and Murray each caught six apiece for 50 and 44 yards, respectively. Walford also scored a TD while Andre Holmes and Michael Crabtree scored, as well. The Raiders had 454 yards of total offense, but the defense was an entirely different story.
Oakland allowed Falcons’ quarterback Matt Ryan to throw for 389 yards and Devonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman combined for 139 yards on 29 carries, as Atlanta outpaced Oakland in total yardage by a net of 74 yards in the game.
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Carr is now in his third NFL season and is building strong momentum on a good 2015. Last year he threw for 7,875 yards with a 60.2 percent completion ratio while throwing 57 TDs and 25 interceptions (2.28:1 ratio). This year, he is averaging more yards per attempt at 7.45, up from last season’s 6.28, and he has four TD passes with no interception through two games.
Carr’s passer rating is up from 85.3 for last season to 107.4, and in Week 1 he threw for an average of 8.40 yards per attempt. Carr should be able to strive towards that higher end. Last week he was a completion machine, but the routes have to be run a bit longer to get the ball downfield quicker.
Carr is not much of a rusher (averaging 13 rushing yards per game this season), so making the most of his receiving corp is how this Raiders team can best reach its potential.
Tennessee won 16-15 over the Detroit Lions in Week 2 after losing to Minnesota 25-16 in Week 1. Last week, the Titans were able to convert a fourth down with a 9-foot TD pass to Andre Johnson with 1:13 to go to seal up the victory. It was Johnson’s only catch of the game, as the Titans racked up 238 passing yards led by Delanie Walker’s 83 yards and a TD. Marcus Mariota threw 25 of 33 for 238 yards with two TDs and one interception, but he was sacked three times for a loss of 14 yards and he was only able to pick up 11 rushing yards on two attempts.
DeMarco Murray rushed for 89 yards on 12 carries, including a 67-yard rush. Derrick Henry had 40 yards on nine attempts. The Titans did not score a rushing TD, while Walker and Johnson’s go-ahead were the two receiving TDs for Tennessee.
The Titans defense had four sacks and five tackles for loss with Brian Orakpo having both two sacks and two tackles for loss.
Perrish Cox had an interception.
Marc Mariani and Antonio Andrews each returned a kick for 19 and 15 yards, respectively, and Mariani had two punt returns for nine yards total. Brett Kern did a good job punting with a 47.3 yard average on three punts including a 54-yard attempt and pinned one within the 20 yard line.
The 1-1 Titans have gone as Mariota has thus far, and that is no surprise. He has thrown four TDs and two interceptions on the year, but last week was his better of the two performances. Mariota needs to get something going on the ground, but his accuracy throwing the ball has been good so far.
Last year his rookie season was cut short by injury, but he looked good in the two games he appeared in 2015.
Mariota is a franchise talent in the pocket, but Tennessee is still trying to put the pieces around him to make it all work. Murray is a talented running back and Mariota will get the most out of his receivers. This week should be a closely contested battle between two young QBs that are both on the rise.