Dave Choate: It sounds like Marcus Mariota will be out. How does the offense change with Mettenberger, and what are your expectations for him Sunday?
Jimmy Morris: They will throw the ball down the field more if Zach Mettenberger gets the start. He has a huge arm and he loves to show it off. They haven't been doing as much of that with Mariota. Now, whether or not they will be able to give Mett time to push the ball down the field or not is another story, but you can bet they will try.
As for my expectations, he will put up some numbers. I don't expect the Titans to be competitive in this game, so they are going to be throwing it....A LOT. I could easily see him end up with a stat line somewhere in the neighborhood of 300 yards with a couple of touchdowns and a couple of interceptions.
Dave Choate: The Titans' ground game has looked a little anemic much of the year, and the Falcons' run defense has been stellar. How will the offense work around that?
Jimmy Morris: Probably by throwing it 50 times. The Titans have two problems when it comes to running the ball- 1. Their offensive line isn't very good, and 2. they don't have a running back that is particularly good. They can't run the ball against bad run defenses, much less good ones. With the way this game will probably go, the Falcons getting an early lead, I don't expect much of an attempt to establish a run game.
Dave Choate: Defensively, I know I asked about Jurrell Casey and the line. What should the Falcons expect from them on Sunday? How aggressively do the Titans blitz?
Jimmy Morris: Jurrell Casey is really, really good. He is probably the Titans best player and can wreak havoc on opposing offenses. The rest of the defensive line isn't much to speak of.
Dick LeBeau likes to blitz. I expect them to do that quite often in this game on Sunday. Perrish Cox is probably not going to play. That leaves Blidi Wreh-Wilson out there covering receivers and that is not an ideal thing for the Titans. They will have to do something to make Matt Ryan uncomfortable.
Dave Choate: I ask this every week: Who's going to stop Julio Jones? How will the Titans use their resources to keep him from getting going?
Jimmy Morris: There isn't anyone on the face of the planet that can stop Julio Jones. Jason McCourty is the Titans best defensive back. In the past he hasn't necessarily matched up on the opposing team's best receiver, but I think they don't have any choice but to have McCourty shadow Julio.
He has a better chance of containing Julio than anyone else in the secondary, but if you are playing on FanDuel this week (see what I did there?), it would be a good idea to roster Julio.
Dave Choate: Two questions to finish up: How does the offensive line look with your starting center out, and what do you expect the result of this game to be?
Jimmy Morris: The offensive line was bad with the starting center. It is worse now.
I really don't see how the Titans can keep this one close. Crazy things happen in the NFL every week, but this has 38-24 with a final score that was closer than the actual game written all over it (and that score isn't very close). How the Falcons are only a 5.5 point favorite in this one is beyond me.