By Jack Ryan

Tomorrow night marks the opening of the Eagles exhibition season, and the Birds are 3 1/2-point favorites over the Tennessee Titans at home.

The Eagles have some of the best depth on both sides of the ball but the key for them to play up to their potential, will be the health of Carson Wentz.

The Titans have a lot of question marks entering the season and could be one of the bigger boom/bust teams this season as quarterback, Marcus Mariota, enters a pivotal year and one that could define his career.

If Mariota has a poor season, the Titans will likely be looking to draft a quarterback high in next year’s draft, as they will be looking to rebuild.

The 2018 Titans finished with a record of 9-7 and 3rd in the AFC South, but if they had won the Sunday Night game against the Indianapolis Colts in week 17 last season, they would have made the playoffs as a wildcard team.

Mariota is likely the starter for the Titans this season, and it is definitely a make or break season for the quarterback. Tennessee has one of the best offensive lines in the NFL this season and they are built for the running game which Mariota excels at.

The defense of the Titans should be one of the better ones in the AFC, but they are not among the elites in the conference this season. The majority of the positions are set for the Titans this season while the backup position at the quarterback position will be decided between Ryan Tannehill who fits the system extremely well as well as Logan Whiteside.

The Eagles have had the luxury of having one of the best backups in the NFL, Nick Foles, on the team and that has proven to be beneficial with the Super Bowl Championship two seasons ago when Wentz went down with an injury at the end of the regular season.

However, they don’t have that same luxury this season and they are gambling that Wentz can stay healthy, as they have Nate Sudfield, Clayton Thorson and Cody Kessler and the other quarterbacks all vying to be the backup to Wentz this season.

The Eagles have arguably a top 5 offensive line this season as well as a decent defense. With Wentz being entrenched as the starter this season Dudfield, Thorson and Kessler will all be battling for snaps in the preseason to see which one will get the job as the backup to Wentz once the regular season begins.

If this were a regular season game the Eagles would likely be heavy favorites against the Titans, but it isn’t and the starters aren’t likely to see much playing time if any in week one of the preseason. Tannehill is the key in this game, and it could be argued that he has the better skill set for this offense and he is the reason why I like the Titans in week one of the preseason against the Eagles.

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