Jaguars-Titans Preview

Associated Press  |  Last updated December 26, 2012
No matter what happens in Sunday's season finale at LP Field, the Tennessee Titans and Jacksonville Jaguars will finish with the worst records in the AFC South. There are still plenty of questions about what will happen this offseason for these struggling franchises. In their second season under Mike Munchak, the Titans (5-10) have missed the playoffs for a fourth consecutive year. They have major questions on both sides of the ball as second-year quarterback Jake Locker has more interceptions (11) than touchdown passes (10) and the team is giving up a league-worst 30.1 points per game after last Sunday's 55-7 loss at Green Bay. Locker was picked off twice and sacked a season-high seven times and Tennessee allowed its most points since losing 59-0 to New England on Oct. 18, 2009. "It's embarrassing to lose 50-something to seven," Munchak said after the Titans fell to 0-8 against teams with winning records. "That's just not acceptable and we let it happen. Thank God we have that (game this week) because I wouldn't want this to be our last game of the year." Munchak has two years left on his contract, but with seven of the team's losses coming by 14 points or more, Titans owner Bud Adams has plenty of decisions to make about the future of his team. New Jaguars owner Shad Khan has to decide if first-year coach Mike Mularkey and general manager Gene Smith will return after the team missed the playoffs for a fifth straight season. Jacksonville (2-13) set a team record for losses last Sunday with a 23-16 defeat to New England, but Mularkey is proud of how his players have competed during this rough season. Three of the Jaguars' last five losses have been by seven points or fewer. "They just haven't been rewarded with something when they've played well, and that's probably the most disappointing thing," Mularkey said. The Jaguars, who've dropped 11 of 12 overall, must end a five-game road losing streak to complete their first season sweep of the Titans since 2005. Led by quarterback Chad Henne, who replaced the injured Blaine Gabbert to throw two TD passes in his first start since last October with Miami, Jacksonville ended a seven-game overall slide with a 24-19 victory over the Titans on Nov. 25. Henne will be missing one of his main targets Sunday with Cecil Shorts - the team leader with 979 receiving yards and seven scores - done for the season after suffering a concussion last week. Jaguars back Rashad Jennings (shoulder) was also placed on injured reserve this week. It's uncertain if 2011 NFL rushing leader Maurice Jones-Drew will return to Jacksonville's backfield for the first time in 10 games due to a sprained left foot. Jones-Drew ran for 103 yards and a touchdown in the Jaguars' last visit to Nashville, a 23-17 Titans victory Dec. 24, 2011. Whoever lines up for Jacksonville will face a Titans team that's 10 points shy of setting the franchise record for most points allowed. The 1983 Houston Oilers currently hold that dubious distinction at 460. "We have one more game, and we've got to fix it," cornerback Alterraun Verner said. "We've got to come out way better than this and finish off strong. This is embarrassing." That would also be a good description of the Titans' offense last week when they totaled a season-low 180 yards. Tennessee had averaged 334.7 yards in the three previous games under offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains, who replaced the fired Chris Palmer following the loss to the Jaguars. Chris Johnson ran for 80 yards against Jacksonville and was held to 28 on 11 carries last Sunday, but the Jaguars have the second-worst rushing defense in the league at 145.1 yards allowed per game. Jacksonville has won three of four in this series but has lost three of four in Nashville.
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Sabathia on post-rehab health: The best I've felt in three years

Carmelo Anthony says he's putting his trust in Phil Jackson

Lynn Swann: Calvin Johnson not a Hall of Famer

NFL requiring background checks for combine participants

Rams owner buys massive 520,000-acre Texas ranch

Cam Newton explains why he did not dive on fumble


George Karl’s agent rips Kings, wants broadcaster reprimanded

WATCH: Popovich has funny reaction to New Hampshire results

Suns vets pull packing peanut prank on rookie Devin Booker

Teammate gives Manning final completion ball from Super Bowl

Report: Ole Miss Football cited in 13 of 28 department violations by NCAA

Larry Sanders to consider NBA comeback after other interests stabilize

Oscillation, thy name is Pablo Sandoval

Mat Latos could be the steal of free agency

WATCH: Blackhawks coach walks out of press conference

Greg McElroy: Cam Newton 'quit on his team'

Tennis umpires secretly banned over gambling issues

WATCH: Dancing Kentucky fan slides down rail, fails

Clemson LB has great response to NFL draft analyst's criticism

Former Aggies QB Kyle Allen reveals culture problems at Texas A&M

Roy Williams collapses during game vs. BC

Panthers TE Greg Olsen shaves off his playoff beard

Derek Fisher thanks Knicks in statement

Miami Heat to honor Shaq by retiring his number 32

Oakland Raiders release Nate Allen

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

The NCAAB power rankings

Report: Kings to keep coach George Karl

Was Alain Vigneault right about NHL's lack of punishment towards Wayne Simmonds?

Report: Knicks fire coach Derek Fisher

The best and worst commercials from Super Bowl 50

Best and worst from Super Bowl 50

Six best plays from Super Bowl 50

Eli doesn't look thrilled as Peyton wins Super Bowl

Did Beyonce almost fall down during Super Bowl halftime show?

Curry to serve as drummer for Panthers

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Follow Yardbarker