The Titans are fielding multiple backup offensive linemen
Ryan Tannehill will have wide receiver A.J. Brown back in the lineup after three games. The Titans’ offense reaches another level with Brown on the field. They’re 7-1 if Brown starts and finishes the game. Since this is Brown’s first game back from a chest injury, we’ll see if he’s limited. Also, who knows if Brown is 100%.
If the 49ers pressure Ryan Tannehill, he goes from a competent quarterback to a guy who looks lost. Tannehill’s passer rating this season is 54.0 when pressured, with ten turnover-worthy throws to go with six interceptions and three touchdowns.
Titans backup offensive tackle Kendall Lamm was a late add to the COVID-19 list. That means Tannehill will have a third-string lineman protecting his blindside along with a backup left guard in Aaron Brewer.
On the other side of the ball, one of the key matchups is Brandon Aiyuk in the slot. In recent weeks, Aiyuk has gone from running just over four routes per game in the slot to around 11. His impact and production go through the roof out of the slot.
Elijah Molden, the Titans hybrid slot defender, was added to the COVID list earlier this week as well. Tennessee gets Chris Jackson back in the secondary, but he’s been prone to give up the big play. Jackson hasn’t played since Week 9.
Kevin Byard is an All-Pro safety, but when he is in the slot, between Byard and Molden, opposing quarterbacks have a 137.0 passer rating when targeting the Titans’ two main slot cornerbacks.
Take care of the ball, attack the middle of the field — Jimmy Garoppolo’s strength — pressure Tannehill, and win the game.