Texans vs Titans: Final Preview

Matt Schaub (Getty Images)

The keys to victory and what to watch for in the Texans matchup with the division leading Titans.

Houston Texans vs. Tennessee Titans
Sunday, December 13, 2008, 1:00 p.m. (EST)
Reliant Stadium, Houston, TX

Tennessee 12-1, Houston 6-7

Series history: Tennessee leads 11-2; Titans won first meeting this season, 31-12.

Five most important things for the Texans:

1. Stop the run. The Titans are very beatable when they aren't running the ball down teams' throats. The Texans need to take their chances with one-on-one coverage on the outside if it means shutting down LenDale White and Chris Johnson.

2. Quick passes. Tennessee can't get pressure on the quarterback if the ball is out of his hand. The Jets used this strategy to beat the Titans earlier this year.

3. Get Andre involved. Johnson is the Texans best playmaker and he needs to get involved early and often.

4. Win special teams. Jacoby Jones will need to have a big return or two for Houston to compete.

5. Get physical. Houston will need to have a physical mindset when playing the Titans, who dominate the line of scrimmage every Sunday. The Texans must play with controlled aggression.

What to look for:

1. Look for Schaub to have a big game. Matt Schaub is the reigning AFC Offensive POW, and he is in a nice groove with the rest of the Texans offense.

2. Look for the team that's best in the red zone to win. The Texans have struggled in the red zone on both offense and defense this year, and the Titans have been very good. Houston needs to reverse that trend.

3. Look for Slaton to have a tough day. The Titans are great against the run, and big plays and points will be at a minimum.

4. Look for Chris Johnson to score. Johnson usually gets one or two big plays a game, and that should be the case.

5. Look for four combined sacks. The Titans are great at rushing the passer, and Mario Williams is one of the best defensive ends in the game. That should equal plenty of havoc for the quarterbacks.

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