What to Watch For: Titans vs Patriots - 2018 AFC Divisional Playoffs

What to Watch For: Titans vs Patriots - 2018 AFC Divisional Playoffs

The Tennessee Titans are now the NFL's Cinderella team after clawing their way to an upset over the Kansas City Chiefs in last week's wild card matchup.

A few hours before the New England Patriots' first practice of the week in preparation for Saturday night's divisional playoff game against the Titans (10-7) at Gillette Stadium, head coach Bill Belichick stepped to the microphone Tuesday morning for his initial press conference of the week. The task will be tough for Tennessee.

But standing in their way are the Tennessee Titans, who have reached the playoffs for the first time since 2008.

Here is a look at, what I feel, is the most simple formula for the Patriots to defeat Tennessee on Saturday and advance to the AFC Championship Game...

Henry ran for 156 yards and a touchdown, including a 35-yard touchdown jaunt in the fourth quarter. This week Murray has not practiced and is already ruled out for what should be the last game of the Titans season.

Let's hold our horses here.

The New England defense is spending the week preparing for mobile quarterback Marcus Mariota, a third-year pro who can make things happen with his legs. "He's been the best for quite some time", Mariota said.

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The best offshore sportsbook players were picking the Pats to make the playoffs this season, and here they are. Against the Patriots, he is going to need to do the same.

"I'm just happy to still be playing in January", he added. The problem teams have against the Patriots is scoring points. The Titans missed some big plays last week by failing to secure the football. No one is going to hand it to us. "To be able to throw the ball, have it knocked down and be able to catch it where he caught it and go in and run and score and dive.it shows his athletic ability". There can not be any slipups this week versus the Patriots.

Many people are surprised it is the Titans whom the Patriots are hosting this weekend. Simple fundamentals like running and catching can go a long way. The former Heisman victor and second-year man has been marvelous filling in for DeMarco Murray. They were able to tally four sacks in the win and rendered the Chiefs offense lifeless. If they don't get to him, at least bring the heat to his doorstep. Well, the Titans need him to be on, and don't be surprised if he does something out of the ordinary.

Casey and the defensive front can take away that time.

"It's not like if he stays in the pocket he can't make throws", defensive back Devin McCourty told reporters earlier this week.

The victor of this game earns the honor of being the sacrificial lamb for the Patriots in the AFC Championship game. The Jaguars ranked first stopping the pass, but 21st against the run. Henry and quarterback Marcus Mariota will again have to hijack the game, which won't be as easy in Foxboro. I'm trying to go out there and win the game. Sure, Casey has to play well but someone has to be there to benefit from his pressures up the middle, so why not Orapko? The rest of the football world will be waiting for the clock to strike midnight and for the playoff version of the Titans to revert to the turnover-prone, low-scoring team we all remember.

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