Game Scout: Titans at Rams

Derek Harper, The Sports Xchange
The SportsXchange

Tennessee Titans (3-4) at St. Louis Rams (3-5)
Sunday, 1:00 p.m. ET, at Edward Jones Dome, St. Louis - TV: CBS
*TV announcers: Marv Albert, Rich Gannon
*Keys to the game: The Rams are still the only team in the NFL without a rushing touchdown, but they stumbled on a very productive ground game last week against Seattle, which sports one of the league's top run defenses. Tennessee does not, allowing 102.9 yards per game. RB Zac Stacy ripped off 134 yards last week and his ankle injury didn't prove to be significant. It's critical for the Rams to run effectively because QB Kellen Clemens threw two interceptions -- the difference in the loss -- and isn't equipped to turn around the lack of red-zone production that has plagued St. Louis the past two weeks. Titans QB Jake Locker is coming off a bye week and will need his hip to be a non-issue after St. Louis manhandled Seattle's offensive line last week. DE Robert Quinn is emerging as one of the league's best and will be engaged in a good duel with LT Michael Roos, although the Rams also utilize stunts to spring Quinn through the interior. RB Chris Johnson is averaging just 3.2 yards per carry with a long of 23 on the season. The Titans will blend RB Shonn Greene into the rushing attack to change things up, but Greene is not a big-play threat.
*Matchup to watch - Titans WR Kendall Wright vs. Rams CB Cortland Finnegan: Wright is the Titans' leading receiver with 40 receptions, and often moves into the slot in three-receiver sets. Finnegan, the feisty veteran who has made a career out of getting under the skin of receivers, played the nickel last week after returning from a three-game absence.
*Player spotlight - Rams WR Tavon Austin: The rookie leads the team with 31 receptions, but the blazing speedster has been anything but a big-play threat with an average of 6.7 yards per reception and a long of 25.
*Fast facts: Titans CB Alterraun Verner leads the NFL with 13 passes defensed. ... In 24 games with coach Jeff Fisher as head coach, the Rams are 0-9-1 when they have no takeaways in a game. In the other 14 games, they are 10-4.
The Rams' defense showed last week it has the capability of dominating offensive lines and controlling field position. If QB Kellen Clemens gets a strong effort out of the ground game and avoids multiple turnovers, the Rams can win a low-scoring contest.
*Our pick: Rams 20-16

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