If the NFL opens on time: Thoughts on the Titans' schedule

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The Titans better be ready for prime time, and Mountain time, 

If the NFL schedule starts as planned, Tennessee will open in Denver as part of the second Monday Night Football game on Sept. 14, leading into a short week to prepare for Jacksonville at home, the first of seven consecutive noon home starts and at least a dozen total.

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The Titans played in Denver on Oct. 13, 2019 and the pathetic offensive showing in a 16-0 loss dropped them to 2-4, got Marcus Mariota benched and triggered the Ryan Tannehill takeover at quarterback that saved a season that resulted in an AFC Championship Game appearance.

It's the first Monday Night Football appearance of opening weekend in franchise history.

The schedule doesn't lead with all four of the Titans' matchups against NFC teams or appear to be built to be shrunk if the NFL must start late because of the coronavirus pandemic. Multiple reports ahead of the schedule release said it would be built in such a fashion. [Unlocked.]

 

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The Sunday night game against the Packers at Lambeau Field is the the first non-flexed Sunday night game for the Titans since 2009. The Week 17 Sunday night matchup with the Colts in 2018 was flexed into primetime.

The Titans won't leave Nashville in October thanks to a Week 7 bye that comes earlier than is ideal.

Weather-wise, Cincinnati and Baltimore in November aren't great and Green Bay a couple days after Christmas sure isn't, but they get the full experience out if that one at Lambeau. Denver right at the start and Jacksonville in mid-December are good.

It's top-heavy at home, with four of the first six and six of the first nine at Nissan Stadium. That means five of the final seven games are on the road.

The Titans don't have a single late afternoon Sunday slot, thought the Week 15 Detroit game is still to be determined.

There is zero reason to schedule a preseason game against an opponent who will be playing in the same building nine weeks later in the regular season. Even if it's the Bears.

The Titans will be playing for their fifth consecutive winning season in 2020 after four consecutive 9-7 years. The only one other stretch in which the club achieved at least five straight winning records was in Houston from 1987 to 1993.

If they got there with another 9-7 it'd certainly be an accomplishment. Mike Vrabel has stated the obvious: The Titans need to add to the home schedule with a home playoff game, or more.

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