Two teams that were involved in deep playoff runs last season will square off to begin Week 11 on the NFL schedule. The Tennessee Titans will face the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field on Thursday Night Football. Tennessee took care of business at home in Week 10 against the Denver Broncos, defeating them by a final score of 17-10. The Packers were also able to notch a home victory last Sunday, beating the Dallas Cowboys in overtime 31-28.
We’ll examine three things to watch during this AFC-NFC clash.
Emerging Weapons On The Outside?
The Titans and Packers have experienced similar narratives throughout the 2022 NFL season with regards to playmakers on the outside. Tennessee and Green Bay both decided to trade superstar wide receivers in the offseason, and have been trying to figure out how to replace the production of A.J. Brown and Davante Adams respectively. For the most part, it has been challenging to fill their shoes.
However, recent performances by two players on Sunday help give both franchises hope that they’ll be able to stretch the field effectively. Nick Westbrook-Ikhine isn’t a household name, and has been jumped on the depth chart multiple times over in Tennessee. However, his five catch, 119 yard, two touchdown game against Denver last week helped make the Titans offense less one dimensional.
On the other side, Green Bay had one of its rookie receivers step up in a big way. Christian Watson had his first standout NFL game against Dallas, catching four passes for 107 yards and three touchdowns. We will see if Westbrook-Ikhine and Watson can keep it going on Thursday night.
It’s no secret that both offenses will want to establish their running game and control the clock. Last season, Green Bay and Tennessee finished tops in the league in time of possession, and the Packers are leaning on their ground game more in the last few weeks. Aaron Jones and A.J. Dillon set the tone against a stout Cowboys defense, tiring them out and limiting their ability to come after quarterback Aaron Rodgers.
After durability questions and a bit of a slow start, Titans running back Derrick Henry has come on strong in the last month or so. His production has been made more impressive when considering that Tennessee has had to play conservatively by necessity, and teams still can’t stop Henry despite knowing what is coming.
Green Bay has conceded the fifth most rushing yards in the NFL this year, and will need to sure that up in order to win the battle at the line of scrimmage.
Expect A Close Contest
Even though Tennessee and Green Bay may have some newfound life in their passing attacks, it doesn’t feel like either team will be able to consistently convert big plays through the air. There figure to be a lot of 10 play or more drives in this game, which will chew up the clock.
Because neither team has the ability to blow anyone out, expect a low scoring affair that will come down to the wire.