Tennessee Titans (1-0) vs. Carolina Panthers (0-1)
Saturday, August 20th, 2016 | 2:00pm CDT
Nashville, TN | Nissan Stadium | TV: WKRN
Nashville, TN – The Tennessee Titans (1-0) host the defending NFC Champion Carolina Panthers (0-1) this week in their second preseason game. Kickoff at Nissan Stadium (capacity 69,143) is scheduled for 2:00pm CDT on Saturday, August 20th.
Commenting on the rare preseason afternoon start time, Titans head coach Mike Mularkey said,“(Panthers head coach) Ron (Rivera) and I spoke at the owners’ meetings. Originally we both sent in requests to play the third preseason game. We thought it would be great to get an afternoon game when the starters are playing a good portion of that (third game) to put them in the heat.”“Let them play like they’re going to play the rest of the year, give them a shot at it then. When it unfolded like it did and we had them in Week 2, Ron and I just talked again and said that it would still be good to have an early game. It’s different. You can get into a rut when you get into training camp if you don’t do some things differently … I think it will be good for everybody,” stated Mularkey.
The game will be televised regionally on the Titans Preseason TV Network, including flagship WKRN News 2 in Nashville. Play-by-play announcer Dan Hellie and analyst Charles Davis will call the action, and Kara Hammer will report from the sidelines.
The Titans Radio Network, including Nashville flagship 104.5 The Zone, will carry the game across the Mid-South with the “Voice of the Titans” Mike Keith, analyst Frank Wycheck, gameday host Rhett Bryan and sideline reporter Jonathan Hutton.
Last Week Against The Chargers
In their preseason opener last week at Nissan Stadium, the Titans rushed for 288 yards and three touchdowns to power to a 27-10 victory over the San Diego Chargers. Averaging 8.7 yards per carry in the contest, the Titans’ rushing yardage total was their highest in a preseason game since a 340-yard rushing output in 2008 against the St. Louis Rams (August 9th).
Tennessee’s 437 total net yards (288 rushing, 149 passing) against the Chargers made up the highest total of any NFL team in the first week of the preseason.
The “Thunder and Thunder” running back duo of veteran DeMarco Murray and rookie Derrick Henry accounted for the majority of the Titans’ ground yards. Murray, who the team acquired in a trade in March, had six attempts for 93 yards, including a 71-yard sprint to the end zone in the first quarter. Henry, a second-round draft pick from Alabama and the reigning Heisman Trophy winner, followed with 10 carries for 74 yards. He scored on a six-yard run in the second quarter.
Second-year quarterback Marcus Mariota played a total of three series in the first quarter. He completed his first pass for 31 yards to fifth-round rookie wide receiver Tajae Sharpe and finished the evening 5-for-5 for 45 yards and a passer rating of 104.2.
Tennessee’s defensive effort against the Chargers was highlighted by a pair of sacks and a pair of interceptions. Outside linebackers Deiontrez Mount and J.R. Tavai provided the sacks, while Mount added a forced fumble. Linebacker Justin Staples provided an interception, as did third-round safety Kevin Byard in his NFL preseason debut.
The Panthers, under Rivera, had the NFL’s best record in 2015 and won the NFC Championship. They advanced to Super Bowl 50, only to fall short to the Denver Broncos.
Panthers quarterback Cam Newton was named the Associated Press NFL MVP following a season in which he passed for 3,837 yards and 35 touchdowns. One of the game’s top dual threats, he added 636 rushing yards and 10 touchdowns on the ground.
One of Carolina’s 15 wins during the 2015 regular season came at the expense of the Titans. In Week 10 at Nissan Stadium, Newton passed for 217 yards and a touchdown and added a rushing touchdown in their 27-10 win.
Sports Equipment Drive
Drive is for the Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee
The Titans, in partnership with The Sports Fund of The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee, will collect new or gently used sports gear prior to the game. The equipment will be sorted and distributed to local nonprofits for at-risk youth in Middle Tennessee. Fans can drop their donations at any one of the six collection drop-off locations outside of Nissan Stadium, starting at 12:00pm and ending 15 minutes after kickoff.