Chargers vs. Titans 2013 game preview: Philip Rivers, Jake Locker face off in Week 3

Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

The San Diego Chargers will take on the Tennessee Titans in Week 3. We take a look at both teams.

The San Diego Chargers and Tennessee Titans are both 1-1 heading into their Week 3 matchup, and the two had very similar Week 2 games. San Diego had a close game against the Philadelphia Eagles, in which the Chargers out-gunned them in the fourth quarter to seal the narrow 33-30 win. The Titans fought the Houston Texans in a very close game that eventually went to overtime.

Of course, the difference between the two matchups is simple: the Titans eventually fell to the Texans, while the Chargers were victorious. It was a strong performance from both teams, and this matchup should be a good one. Last season, the Chargers played the Titans in Week 2, and won, 38-10.

Let's take a look at both teams below.

Meet the Titans

The Titans significantly under-performed last season, but have looked good through the first two weeks of this season. They made the Pittsburgh Steelers look bad in Week 1, and kept things very close against the Texans in Week 2. The Titans' defense couldn't hold fast late in the game, which allowed the Texans to make it to overtime, where they scored a touchdown to end the game.

Wide receiver Kenny Britt had a bad game, and has since been benched because of it. Clearly, the Titans feel that Jake Locker would be better off throwing to guys like Justin Hunter and Kendall Wright, and Britt doesn't seem to factor into the team's future going forward.

One thing the Titans have going for them is that they boast a better-than-average pass defense, though they have a below-average run defense. Fortunately for them, the Chargers don't have much of a rushing attack.

Meet the Chargers

If the Chargers are to succeed this season, then quarterback Philip Rivers needs to be in fine form. He wasn't that in Week 1, but he returned to his Pro Bowl-caliber self in Week 2. He completed 36 of 47 passes for 419 yards and three touchdowns with no interceptions against the Eagles. Running back Ryan Matthews added 73 yards of rushing on the ground.

Rivers simply needs his receivers to step up. Unfortunately, he's working with very little, but he did manage to find Antonio Gates eight times for 124 yards and Eddie Royal seven times for 90 yards, including all three of his touchdown passes. Malcom Floyd is expected to be a big contributor, and he put up 102 receiving yards against the Eagles, but he was also banged up in the process. That will definitely be something to watch out for.

Local Takes: Titans

Jimmy Morris of Music City Miracles thinks the Titans need to move on from Kenny Britt and get Justin Hunter some action right away:

It is time for the Titans to start working Justin Hunter into games RIGHT NOW.  They drafted Hunter to replace Britt because it was already obvious that he wasn't going to be here next year.  It would be a mistake to wait until next year to get Hunter worked in.  Start it now.  Britt isn't giving you much of anything at this point anyway.

Local Takes: Chargers

Kyle Posey of Bolts From The Blue believes that Rivers returning to form is the reason why the Chargers have looked good thus far:

The Chargers have scored on a league high 50% of their drives. Two games or not, that's impressive. That just doesn't happen by chance or luck. It might seem overly optimistic to credit Rivers as much as I have, but it's hard to turn a blind eye to his performance so far.

Follow the Fun

Be sure to check out SB Nation's team blogs, Music City Miracles and Bolts From The Blue, for more analysis and highlights from the game.

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From the Week 3 picks:

Surprise of 2013: The Titans are fun to watch. No, really they are, even with Jake Locker.

The pick: Tennessee


The Titans opened up as 3-point favorites and the line has not moved at all on most of the major odds-makers' sites, according to OddsShark.

Next Week

The Titans will continue a three-game stretch at home with a game against the New York Jets on Sept. 29.  The Chargers will return home to host the Dallas Cowboys on the same day.

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Week 3 picks: Beware of big spreads

An illustrated guide to playing cornerback

NFL hot seat watch: Ryan loses, Allen wins

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Browns trade Trent Richardson to Colts | What it means for Indy | Who wins?

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