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WeakT itansc ould sinkw ithoutt race.

Byline: Phil Agius

PITTSBURGH at TENNESSEE Sky Sports1,1 .20am PITTSBURGH have a fine chance to record their first away win of the season at Tennessee tonight, writes Phil Agius.

The Steelers have not been at their best on the road this term, losing 31-19 at Denver in Week One and going down 34-31 at Oakland, but with running back Rashard Mendenhall and top linebacker James Harrison back to fitness they have an ideal opportunity.

Tennessee were second in the AFC South betting at the start of the season but a leaky defence has seen them win only one of their five matches.

The Titans' defeats have come by 21, 28, 24, and 23 points, with their sole win coming in a crazy 44-41 overtime game against Detroit, whose defence has been just as bad as theirs.

Tennessee also needed some amazing special-teams plays to get that win on the board and though they have that in their locker, they no longer have QB Jake Locker at their disposal.

The second-season star had been showing improved form this year but is sidelined with shoulder injury that has left veteran Matt Hasselbeck in command of their offence.

He has had more practice time with the team now but the Titans really need running back Chris Johnson to recapture his former form in support.

Things are loooking up for Pittsburgh after their careful rehabilitation programme for Mendenhall appeared to pay off as he looked sharp in gaining 81 yards on 14 carries against the Eagles.

The Titans have conceded an average of 424 total yards and 144 rushing yards per game this season and Mendenhall can be fancied to top the 75.5-yard mark set by Ladbrokes.

Tennessee probably aren't quite as bad as their results suggest as the four teams who have beaten them are all play-off contenders, and they also enjoy a decent home advantage, but Pittsburgh should be capable of putting points on the board against a struggling defence.

The Titans really can't be trusted and starts of less than two field goals make little appeal for a side who have not been close to covering the handicap in four of their five games.

Recommendations Pittsburgh -5 2pts 10-11 Hills R Mendenhall over 75.5 rushing yards 1pt 10-11 Lads THELOWDOWN Venue LP Field, Nashville, Tennessee Surface Grass Weather Chance of showers, 8C Best handicaps Pittsburgh -5; Tennesssee +5.5 Points line 42-43 points Team news Pittsburgh Safety Troy Polamalu (calf) is out and linebacker Lamar Woodley (hamstring) is likely to miss the game. Running back Rashard Mendenhall (knee) and linebacker James Harrison (knee) came through their returns to action last week successfully. Tennessee Jake Locker (shoulder) is still sidelined so Matt Hasselbeck remains the starting quarterback. Running back Javon Ringer (knee) is out for at least a month. Linebacker Colin McCarthy (ankle) is hoping to play. Key stat Tennessee have conceded 30 points or more in every match this season Formguide PITTSBURGH at TENNESSEE (h) 16-14 Philadelphia (a) 7-30 Minnesota (a) 31-34 Oakland (a) 14-38 Houston (h) 27-10 NY Jets (h) 44-41 Detroit (a) 19-31 Denver (a) 10-38 San Diego (h) 13-34 N England

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Rashard Mendenhall is back in business for Pittsburgh
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:The Racing Post (London, England)
Geographic Code:1U9CA
Date:Oct 11, 2012
Words:536
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