Titans best opener for Steelers

Posted by ESPN.com's James Walker

The Tennessee Titans stomped the "Terrible Towels" following last year's regular season win over the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Their reward? A Week 1 visit to Heinz Field Thursday Sept. 10 to kick off the 2009 NFL season.

The pairing is no surprise. Once the Baltimore Ravens asked the league not to play in Pittsburgh in prime time for the third straight year, Tennessee became the best opening week opponent for the Steelers. The NFL passed over other potential home candidates for Pittsburgh such as the San Diego Chargers and Minnesota Vikings.

In addition to the towel incident, this game also pits two strong AFC contenders. The Titans and Steelers combined for 25 regular-season victories last year and should be among the early favorites to represent the conference next season.