Given the state of the AFC South, the Titans could sleepwalk to a division title. Starting out the year 2-0 against the division while being the only team with a winning record bodes well for the Titans. Hosting a playoff game is immensely valuable for a team vying for its first Super Bowl appearance since its inaugural season more than two decades ago. Whether or not the team can put it together in all three phases for 60 minutes remains to be seen.
The Titans never trailed the Jaguars on Sunday and wound up winning by a score of 37-19. It was the highest scoring game of the season for Tennessee and the second time they’ve held a divisional opponent under 20 points. A win is a win, but you have to believe that we have yet to see Tennessee’s best football. Hopefully they find it quick, because a date with hottest team in football awaits on Monday Night Football against the Buffalo Bills in Week 6.
Quick Defensive Thoughts:
In the defensive trenches, however, Harold Landry III continues to earn more money in a contract year. He collected two more sacks this weekend. Kevin Byard was force all day making eight solo tackles, second best on the team, an interception to end the game and a scoop and score defensive touchdown to open the game. Between Byard, Landry, Jeffrey Simmons and upstart play from young guys like Kristian Fulton and David Long Jr., the Titans have the personnel to make plays against the NFL’s top offenses. Scheme fit and play-calling from DC Shane Bowen, however, has been hit or miss to say it kindly.
Quick Offensive Thoughts:
It was another rough week for the Titans offensive line as they surrendered three sacks on the day. Ryan Tannehill was efficient, but not great. Under siege all day, he went 14-for-22 throwing the ball for 197 yards and a lone touchdown pass to MyCole Pruitt. The 9.0 yards per attempt was Tannehill’s best outing of the season. Derrick Henry continued to carry the load for this team rushing the ball 29 times for 130 yards and three touchdowns. The King ranks first in attempts, yards, and touchdowns among running backs this season. AJ Brown returned from injury but looked like a shell of himself and may have been playing more of a decoy role. Brown, himself, admitted to being on a snap count in the postgame presser. WR Marcus Johnson returned from IR catching three of his five targets for a team-leading 52 yards.
Health is a concern for Tennessee and may play a role in their upcoming schedule. This game saw starting pro-bowl G Roger Saffold leave with an injury. Julio Jones missed another week, as well. Missing games is a concern, but missing practice is becoming evident in each game they play. The team missed time together in August due to injuries and a COVID-19 outbreak. And they haven’t really had time to build continuity since. Coming into this week, the Titans listed 21 players on the injury report. It’s a good thing the Super Bowl isn’t played in October, but the Titans have matchups with huge long-term seeding implications in the coming weeks. We’ll get to see how real these Titans are soon enough.
Week 6: vs. Buffalo (MNF)
Week 7: vs. Chiefs
Week 8: @ Colts
Week 9: @ Rams (SNF)