The Tennessee Titans and New York Giants will open their 2022 regular seasons against one another with a Week 1 matchup at Nissan Stadium in Nashville.
The Titans are coming off a season in which they won 12 games, a division title and the No. 1 seed in the conference despite dealing with an historic amount of injuries.
However, the promising season ended in bitter disappointment, as the Titans lost to the Cincinnati Bengals in the divisional round, 19-16. Since then, Tennessee has completely revamped its offense with a slew of new wide receivers, tight ends, and a pair of new starters on the offensive line.
The Giants suffered their fifth-straight losing season in 2021 as they continue to slog through a dark age for the franchise. The lackluster showing led to the firing of former head coach Joe Judge and the resignation of former general manager, Dave Gettleman.
The Giants have new hope in 2022 thanks to the hiring of head coach Brian Daboll, who comes over to New York after a very successful stint as the Buffalo Bills’ offensive coordinator.
With this contest just days away, here’s a look at six things to know about the Titans and the Giants going into their Week 1 matchup.
Titans are favored
According to Tipico Sportsbook, the Titans are 5.5-point home favorites over the Giants in Week 1, a spread that has tightened by one point since it was originally released. The over/under is set at 43.5.
Obviously trends don’t always carry over from year-to-year, but the Titans were 10-8 against the spread but hit the over in just eight of 18 games, (including playoffs), while the Giants were 6-11 against the spread and hit the over five times.
With the Titans sporting a very good defense and an offense that has several new faces, and with the Giants installing a new offense, there’s a good chance these teams get off to slow starts offensively. We predict Tennessee will win, 23-20.
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This will be the 13th meeting all time between these two franchises, with the first five coming while the Titans were the Houston Oilers. The Giants won all five of those contests.
Since moving to Tennessee, the Titans have won six of their seven meetings against New York. The last meeting came in 2018, a contest the Titans won via shutout in New York, which was also the team’s first since 2000.
Adoree' Jackson returns to Nashville
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For the first time since the Titans cut him in 2020, the former Titans first-round pick will return to Nashville to face his former team.
Despite the abrupt and disappointing ending to his tenure there (he was cut after the team picked up his fifth-year option), Jackson doesn’t view this as a revenge game and is instead excited to see his old teammates.
“That’s the organization that drafted me, so I’m forever thankful and grateful for the opportunity that they gave me,” Jackson said. “At the end of the day, it just didn’t pan out the way they wanted, and I wanted. That’s how life goes.”
“It’s going to be cool. I get to see a couple of my guys,” Jackson continued. “Kevin Byard, Amani Hooker, Derrick Henry, and Robert Woods. That’s what I’m most excited about, seeing some familiar faces. A couple of the coaches that I know, built some relationships with. It’s just going to be fun seeing them, chopping it up with them. Probably get a jersey after the game or two so that’s going to be nice.”
Jackson was impressive during his first season with the Giants and has now been thrust into the No. 1 cornerback role after the team released James Bradberry, a role Jackson secured with a very strong showing in camp.
Jackson is saying all the right things, but there’s no doubt he’d love to stick it to his former team in Week 1.
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Both of these teams will be sporting new-look offenses in 2022, but for different reasons.
The Giants are installing a new offense under their new head coach Brian Daboll, who comes over from the Buffalo Bills as their former offensive coordinator. Much of New York’s personnel remains the same, though.
Meanwhile, the Titans kept their offensive coordinator but have several new faces on the offense. Their entire receiving corps. and tight end group have been revamped, and Tennessee has two new starters on the offensive line.
Going into 2022, the primary goal for both of these offenses is improvement after lackluster campaigns in 2021. However, it wouldn’t be surprising to see both teams get off to a slow start as players get acclimated to their new situations.
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Both teams could be without key pass-rushers in Week 1.
For the Titans, that’s a certainty after the team’s 2021 sacks leader, outside linebacker Harold Landry, tore his ACL last week. The team will now look to fill the void with guys like Denico Autry, DeMarcus Walker, Rashad Weaver and Ola Adeniyi, all of whom are expected to chip-in.
For the Giants, they could be without 2022 first-round pick Kayvon Thibodeaux (knee) and 2021 second-round pick and the team’s sacks leader, Azeez Ojulari (calf), both of whom sustained knee injuries in the preseason.
Historic injury issues
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The Titans set the worst kind of NFL record in 2021 after fielding 91 players because of a ton of injuries. The 2022 campaign is off to a bad start in that area, as we already mentioned Landry is out for the season.
The Giants have been no strangers to injuries, either. Since 2009, no team in the NFL has more ‘man games lost‘ due to injury, with an astounding 3,000-plus total. The Titans have a shade under 2,000 in that same span.