While the Jaguars forcing overtime in Week 11 against the Texans was certainly surprising, perhaps it shouldn't have been considering the way the season has gone for the team. On the road, the Jaguars have never lost by more than double-digits and have managed to keep games close despite playing at Lambeau Field against the Packers and Reliant Stadium against the Texans.
It has been a different story at home, though. At EverBank Field, the Jaguars are 0-5 and have never lost by fewer than 17 points. To break that trend, they'll have to beat a Titans team that dominated in a Week 10 game in Miami, defeating the Dolphins, 37-3.
After a 1-4 start, the Titans are trying to claw back in to playoff contention, but a loss in Jacksonville would drop the Titans to 4-7 with a giant hole to dig themselves out of.
Meet the Jaguars
The Jaguars offense has been one of, if not the worst in the NFL, but it will have a brand-new look in Week 12. After Blaine Gabbert went down with an arm injury after just two throws in Week 11, he was replaced by Chad Henne. The former-Dolphins quarterback finished with a career-best 354 yards passing and four touchdowns before Gabbert was placed on injured reserve two days later. Henne will look to continue that success that featured Justin Blackmon accumulating 236 yards receiving after tallying only 250 yards receiving in the first nine games of the season. Behind Henne will be Jalen Parmele, the journeyman running back that has had much more success than Rashad Jennings in the absence of Maurice Jones-Drew.
On defense, the Jaguars have struggled most of the season, but never more than Week 11 when the unit allowed 527 yards passing to Matt Schaub. The Texans quarterback shredded a defense that was on the field for 91 plays and eventually found Andre Johnson for a game-winning touchdown in overtime. However, with Dwight Lowery expected to return to the lineup, the Jaguars should get a boost in the secondary.
Meet the Titans
While there is a possibility that the Jaguars have given up on its first round selection in the 2011 NFL Draft, Gabbert, the Titans have just recently turned the team over to its own. Jake Locker earned his first career road victory against the Dolphins with two touchdowns and no interceptions en route to a 93.8 quarterback rating. For the season, Locker has six touchdowns and two interceptions for a 90.8 rating. Behind him will be Chris Johnson, the former-2000 yard rusher who is second in the AFC with 862 yards and five touchdowns.
Defensively, the Titans rank as one of the NFL's worst. Only the Raiders have allowed more points than Tennessee, although the unit had its best performance of the season in Week 10. The Titans allowed only three points and 255 yards of offense just one week after giving up 51 points to the Bears. Linebackers Akeem Ayers, Colin McCarthy and Zach Brown each recorded an interception for the Titans in the team's last game.
Local Takes: Jaguars
Alfie Crow from Big Cat Country says that wide receiver Kevin Elliott is a player to watch for the final six games of the season:
Elliott has played in spots so far in the season due to injuries at the position, but hasn't really made a big impact yet. He's a big receiver with the ability to get down the field and looks like a stud special teams player, but he's going to get a chance to make plays as a receiver. Earlier in the season he had some issues catching the football, but it's possible that was just rookie nerves after being thrust into the lineup.
Local Takes: Titans
Jimmy Morris from Music City Miracles says that the Titans are in a must-win situation against the Jaguars in Week 12:
There are very few "must wins" in an NFL season, but this game is pretty close to a "must win" for the Titans. The Jags are one of, if not THE, worst teams in the NFL. They absolutely cannot afford to go down there and lose.
Follow the Fun
Be sure to check out SB Nation's team blogs, Big Cat Country and Music City Miracles, for more analysis and highlights from the game.
Add these fine follows to your Twitter timeline:
Big Cat Country manager, @AlfieBCC
At least Blaine Gabbert never did what Mark Sanchez did.— Alfie Crow (@AlfieBCC) November 23, 2012
Music City Miracles manager, @JMorrisMCM
Allow me to be the anti-Clay Travis...Why in the world would Gruden leave MNF to coach at UT? It really doesnt make sense— Jimmy Morris (@jmorrisMCM) November 21, 2012
Jaguars beat writer @RyanOHalloran
Anybody tonight on a Delta flight from LA to Sydney that says "Florida Times-Union" to my parents, my Dad will buy you a drink. Serious.— Ryan O'Halloran (@ryanohalloran) November 21, 2012
Titans beat writer @JWyattSports
Titans RB Chris Johnson said he hasn't thought about his future with team. Said he knows 31 other teams would love to have him if Titans ...— Jim Wyatt (@jwyattsports) November 22, 2012
You think I'm betting against Chad Henne? I don't think so. (Actually, I just don't think the Titans are very good.)
The pick: 20-17, Jaguars
After opening as 2.5-point favorites, the Titans are now favored by as many as four points in some sports books, according to OddShark.