Tennessee Titans (1-3) at Minnesota Vikings (3-1)
Sunday, Oct. 7th, 2012 • 3:25 pm CDT • Mall of America Field • Minneapolis, MN • TV: CBS
Nashville, TN – The Tennessee Titans (1-3) play their second consecutive road contest this week, traveling to Minneapolis to face the Minnesota Vikings (3-1). The late-afternoon kickoff at Mall of America Field (capacity 63,731) is scheduled for 3:25pm CDT on Sunday, October 7th.
This week’s game will be televised regionally on CBS, including Nashville affiliate WTVF News-Channel 5. Bill Macatee will handle play-by-play duties while Steve Tasker provides analysis.
The Titans Radio Network, including Nashville flagship 104.5 The Zone, will broadcast the game across the Mid-South with the “Voice of the Titans” Mike Keith, color commentator Frank Wycheck, sideline reporter Cody Allison and gameday host Larry Stone.
Additionally, Sports USA will broadcast the game to a national radio audience. Bob Fitzgerald (play-by-play) and Charles Arbuckle (analyst) have the call.
The game can be heard locally on 1400am WJZM.
The Titans traveled to division-rival Houston Texans last week and were defeated by a final score of 38-14.
In the loss, running back Chris Johnson produced his first 100-yard game of 2012 and the 29th 100-yard game of his five-year career. Rushing for 141 yards on 25 carries, Johnson recorded his highest rushing total since December 4th, 2011 at the Buffalo Bills.
At quarterback, the Titans were dealt a significant loss early in the game. Starter Jake Locker was knocked out of the contest with a left shoulder injury he suffered on the team’s second offensive series. Matt Hasselbeck stepped in and passed for 193 yards and touchdowns to tight end Craig Stevens and Kendall Wright.
However, the Titans were unable to overcome three costly turnovers that the Texans turned into 17 total points.
The Vikings visited the Detroit Lions last week and left with a 20-13 victory. They scored their only touchdowns on special teams—a 105-yard touchdown by Percy Harvin on the game’s opening kickoff and a 77-yard punt return by Marcus Sherels—and added a pair of field goals.
The Vikings already have won as many games in 2012 as they did in all of 2011. They own at least a share of first place in the NFC North after four weeks, with the 2-1, division-rival Chicago Bears visiting the Dallas Cowboys on Monday, October 1st.
On the other side of the ball, the Vikings are led by four-time All-Pro defensive end Jared Allen. In 2011, Allen led the NFL with 22 sacks, coming within a half sack of the all-time NFL record.
Quarterbacks Linked by 2011 Draft
The Titans and Vikings each have second-year signal callers who were among the highlytouted players at their position entering the 2011 NFL Draft.
With the eighth pick, the Titans selected Locker from the University of Washington. As a rookie, he sat behind Hasselbeck and came off the bench in five total games. He won the starting job in 2012, however, and in his first four career starts he has completed 67 of 106 passes for 781 yards, four touchdowns and two interceptions (90.2 passer rating).
Four picks after the Titans selected Locker, the Vikings took Florida State’s Christian Ponder. After beginning the 2011 campaign as a backup, Ponder started the final 10 games of the season and passed for 1,853 yards, 13 touchdowns and 13 interceptions. Thus far in 2012, Ponder is 84-of-123 for 824 yards, four touchdowns and no interceptions (97.8 passer rating).
Titans-Vikings Series At A Glance
- Overall series (regular & postseason): Vikings lead series 7-4
- Regular season series: Vikings lead series 7-4
- Postseason series: None
- Total points: Titans 181, Vikings 290
- Current streak: One win by Titans
- Titans at home vs. Vikings: 3-1
- Titans on the road vs. Vikings: 1-6
- Longest winning streak by Titans: 1 (last 2008)
- Longest losing streak by Titans: 4 (1995-04)
- Titans vs. Vikings at LP Field: 1-0
- Last time at LP Field: Vikings 17 at TITANS 30 (9/28/08)
- Titans vs. Vikings at Mall of America Field: 1-5
- Last Time at Mall of America Field: Titans 3 at VIKINGS 20 (10/24/04)
- First Time: Oilers 10 at VIKINGS 51 (10/13/74)
- Mike Munchak’s Record vs. Vikings: 0-0
- Leslie Frazier’s Record vs. Titans: 0-0
- Mike Munchak’s Record vs. Leslie Frazier: 0-0
A Titans Victory Would
- Give the Titans a 30-12 record versus all NFC opponents since 2002 realignment.
- Improve Mike Munchak’s career record as a head coach to 11-10.
- Give Jake Locker a 2-3 career record as a starting quarterback, or give Matt Hasselbeck a 79-69 starting record in the regular season.
What To Look For This Week
- RB Chris Johnson can record the 30th 100-yard rushing game of his career. He would join Earl Campbell (39) and Eddie George (36) as the only players in franchise history to reach the mark.
- RB Chris Johnson can record 100 rushing yards in back-to-back weeks for the 17th time in his career.
- T Michael Roos can notch his 117th consecutive start.
- TE Craig Stevens (138 receiving yards) needs 29 yards to set a new career high for receiving yards in a season (166 in 2011).
- WR Nate Washington can extend his streak of consecutive games with at least one reception to 67 (53 games with the Titans).
- DE Kamerion Wimbley can play in his 100th career regular season game.
Titans-Vikings Series History
The Titans and Vikings have met just 11 times in the regular season. The Vikings lead the series 7-4, although the Titans prevailed most recently, a 30-17 home win in 2008. That game marked the Vikings’ lone appearance in the history of LP Field.
The first Oilers-Vikings game in 1974 finished with a lopsided score of 51-10 in favor of the Vikings. It is still the eighth biggest defeat for the Titans in franchise history. The Vikings finished that season with a trip to Super Bowl IX.
The 1974 meeting also was the first and only game played by the Oilers at Metropolitan Stadium, which the Vikings would leave in 1982 when the Metrodome opened. At the Metrodome, the Titans have managed just one win in six outings. They were victorious there in 1992, the last time they beat the Vikings before a four-game losing streak began.
The first time the Vikings played in Tennessee during the regular season was December 26th, 1998. On that day, the Titans hosted the Vikings in the regular season finale, a game the Vikings won by a final score of 26-16. The Titans were left with an 8-8 record, while the Vikings were 15-1 and would later advance to the NFC Championship Game. That was the final game the Titans played at Vanderbilt Stadium and the final time the team would be called the Oilers. In 1999, LP Field opened and the team took the name Titans.
Minnesota Vikings 17 at Tennessee Titans 30
Sunday, September 28th, 2008
LP Field, Nashville, Tennessee
The Titans forced four turnovers and rushed for three touchdowns in a 30-17 defeat of the Minnesota Vikings at LP Field.
The touchdown was Johnson’s second of the game. He matched Vikings running back Adrian Peterson, whose game totals included 18 carries for 80 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
The Titans opened the game with an 11-play, 74-yard drive that ended with a 20-yard field goal by Rob Bironas.
On the third play of Minnesota’s first possession, quarterback Gus Frerotte hit fullback Naufahu Tahi for a short gain. David Thornton pursued the play and knocked the ball loose. It was recovered by Stephen Tulloch for the first of three Titans fumble recoveries.
The Titans took over at the Minnesota 33-yard line. After driving to the three-yard line, LenDale White fumbled the ball, and the Vikings recovered in the end zone for a touchback. However, the play was challenged by head coach Jeff Fisher and reversed upon the ruling that White was down at the one-yard line before fumbling. On the next play, Johnson sprinted into the end zone for a touchdown.
The Vikings scored their initial points on the first play of the second quarter. Peterson sprinted for a 28-yard touchdown to pull his team within three points.
The Titans responded on the ensuing series with their third consecutive scoring drive to start the game. Quarterback Kerry Collins, who passed for 199 yards in the game, completed passes of 28 and 25 yards to Justin Gage to help set up a 32-yard field goal by Rob Bironas. Gage led the Titans with five receptions for 92 yards on the day.
Referee Peter Morelli upheld the call on the field, and on the next play White crossed the goal line for his fifth touchdown of the season.
The Titans took a 23-10 lead into the fourth quarter after Bironas booted a 49-yard field goal in the third period. With six minutes remaining on the clock, Peterson scored his second touchdown of the game on a three-yard run to make the score 23-17.
Chris Carr returned the ensuing kickoff 52 yards. The Titans converted one first down, and then Craig Hentrich punted to the Minnesota two-yard line. That set the stage for a third-down play in which Brown pressured Frerotte in the end zone, resulting in the errant pass that was corralled by Harper.
Defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth added a late sack to give him two of the team’s four sacks.