Tennessee Titans hire new head coach, Mike Vrabel

Official Tennessee Titans Fan Reporter

By Karen Christensen //@ksc47

 

After the Tennessee Titans lost to the New England Patriots in the AFC divisional game, former head coach Mike Mularkey was set to negotiate a new contract with the Tennessee Titans on January 15th.  The Titans had released a statement the previous week after the win against the Kansas City Chiefs during the Wild Card round that the team was sticking with Mularkey and that he would continue to be the head coach.  What happened during the negotiations to extend and renew the contract with Mularkey?  

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Titans Make it to the Playoffs, beat Jacksonville

Official Tennessee Titans Fan Reporter

By Karen Christensen // @ksc47

Titans 15 – Jacksonville 10

 

Division rivals Jacksonville Jaguars were not gonna make it easy for the Tennessee Titans. The Jags were already in the playoffs, but they still played their first line players and were going all out against the Titans at freezing Nissan Stadium in Nashville on the last day of 2017.  The Titans have lost three games in a row and this was their last chance to survive and get into the playoffs.  They succeeded and made it in.  It was another “ugly” win for Tennessee.  It was another low scoring, not the most exciting game.  The end result is that the Titans are in the playoffs for the first time since 2008 is beyond exciting.

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The Jaguars vs the Titans, week 17 preview

Official Denver Broncos Reporter

By Julie Dixon // @ABroncoNole

 

The Jacksonville Jaguars have locked in their spot in the playoffs, so there will be no change if they win or lose. However, head coach Doug Marrone has said they’ll play to win and will start the ones. Some may think this is foolish, but this tough guy mentality is exactly why they’re the #3 seed.

Tennessee, on the other hand, must win or have both the Chargers and Bills lose. Based on this, they will be going full bore. If the Jaguars do indeed show up to play, it might not be enough.  It’s in Jacksonville’s best interest to lose because the Titans would travel to Jacksonville and they’d be the easiest of the three teams they could face.

Tennessee Titans quarterback Marcus Mariota has been all over the place this season due to injuries. He beat Jacksonville week two because Jaguars QB Blake Bortles turned the ball over five times and the defense looked as if they just gave up. Up until he did that though, Jacksonville defense looked good. Plus, defensive tackle Marcell Dareus hadn’t been signed yet.

With Mariota far from being at the top of his game, Tennessee has one weapon and that’s their run game. While Jacksonville is 21st in stopping run yards, they’re tied for 8th in allowing rushing TDs at 9.

Tennessee, on the other hand, is tops at stopping the run and not allowing TDs. Running back Leonard Fournette will have his work cut out for him. Luckily for Jacksonville, the Titans are ranked 25th at stopping the pass, so if the run isn’t successful, the pass is there.

Bortles has 18 TDs and no interceptions in the red zone. Last season, Mariota was a leader in this category, but no more and that’s where Bortles can really hurt the Titans.

For the Titans, they’re facing the number one pass defense in the league whereas Mariota is ranked 21st, so this is not a good match-up for them. Combine that with Jacksonville leading the league with 52 sacks and Tennessee allowing 32, that’s another bad matchup.

Even though Jacksonville has had a series of injuries on their offensive line, Bortles is among the least sacked at 22.  The Titans, however, are 5th in sacking the QB. Tackle Cam Robinson is listed as questionable. It will be tough to see Marrone starting him with the playoffs next week, so that’s where the Titans could attack.

The key for the Titans is to run the ball and keep Bortles from scrambling. He’s a bigger guy than people think and doesn’t go down easy. This has allowed him from being sacked often even with a hurt offensive line

The key for Jacksonville is to stop the run and get in Mariota’s face. He’s playing scared because of the injuries and will want to dump the ball quickly.  This has lead to a season of interceptions.

While it would benefit the Jaguars to lose, I can only see this happening if Marrone plays the second string. Jacksonville is a better team on every level and will want to beat their division rival.

 

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Titans lose on the road to Arizona

Official Tennessee Titans Fan Reporter

 

By Karen Christensen //@ksc47

Cardinals 12 – Titans 7

 

What was supposed to be a beautiful beginning of a trip out west ended up an offensive nightmare. The Titans defense was playing full force. They had eight sacks this game and they kept the Cardinals from scoring touchdowns. However, the Tennessee offense was just plain awful. They are not working together. There is no mojo brewing, no fantastic plays, and certainly no smashmouth football going on. Blah!!

via GIPHY

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Titans Win a Bruiser Against the Texans

Official Tennessee Titans Reporter

By Karen Christensen // @ksc47

Titans 24 – Texans 13

After being defeated 57-14 and humiliated by the Houston Texans in October, there was some talk about this game being a rematch or a revenge game.  I would say it was not an even rematch. 

The Texans had lost two of their brightest stars, rookie quarterback DeShaun Watson and defensive end JJ Watt to injuries.  I would say it wasn’t even a revenge game.  Just another divisional game that the Tennessee Titans had to win to keep hope alive to finally get into the playoffs.  Something that the team hasn’t done since 2008.  The Titans keep plodding along and getting unspectacular wins, but by gummies, they are getting wins.

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Titans Victorious in Indianapolis; Beat the Colts For The First Time at Lucas Oil Stadium

Official Tennessee Titans Reporter

By Karen Christensen //@ksc47

Titans 20 – Colts 16

Yep, it was another slow starting, low scoring game for the Tennessee Titans.  In the first half, Tennessee was only scoring by field goals.  Kicker Ryan Succop did all the scoring.  First, with a  29-yard kick and then a 45-yard kick for the Titan’s only scores.   

Quarterback Marcus Mariota threw two interceptions in the first half of the game.  That created flashbacks to the horror that was last week’s Thursday Night Football game against the Steelers in Pittsburgh.  A 40-17 loss where Mariota had four interceptions.  The second interception during this game happened when wide receiver Taywan Taylor fell down, and the ball went sailing into Indianapolis defender Nate Hariston’s arms.

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Divisional Impact of Deshaun Watson’s Injury

Official Lions Reporter

 

By Sonja Greenfield // @Mom23RN

 

Less than 24 hours after the city of Houston celebrated a World Series win, the fans in Houston get dealt a devastating blow.  Texans rookie quarterback Deshaun Watson tore his ACL at practice today and is done for the season.  He was on the way to having a very special season.  After already losing defensive end J.J. Watt and linebacker Whitney Mercilus, the last thing this team needed was an injury their quarterback.

This news caps off a rather crazy week for the Texans.   The Texans owner, Bob McNair, made some questionable comments last week, inferring that Texans players were “inmates”.   News also broke earlier today that their division rival Indiana Colts quarterback Andrew Luck would be shut down for the rest of the season as well.

This leads us to ask the very intriguing question.  Are the Jacksonville Jaguars now in a position where they could win the division?

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The Losing Streak Is Over; Titans Beat The Colts

Official Tennessee Titans Fan Reporter

By Karen Christensen // @ksc47  

Tennessee Titans  36-22   Indianapolis Colts

Place Kicker Ryan Succop Andrew Nelles, The Tennessean

October 2011 was the last time that the Titans beat their AFC South division rivals, the Indianapolis Colts.  The Colts had beaten the Titans eleven times in a row; quite a shameful statistic.  It was looking like the winning streak was going to continue on Monday Night Football in Nashville, with the first half of the game being a bit of a snooze fest courtesy of the Titans offense.  Sportscaster Jon Gruden had this to say about the Titans action in the first half:

“play selection and execution is just not good enough”.  

The offense was predictable, the defense was not stopping runs,  Colts quarterback Jacoby Brissett had plenty of time to throw the ball, and the Titans’ pass rush was almost non-existent.  The only scoring for the Titans were three field goals by placekicker Ryan Succop, who set an NFL record for the most consecutive field goals under 50 yards (#47 was the record setter, and four more goals added to make the record 51 consecutive field goals). Continue reading “The Losing Streak Is Over; Titans Beat The Colts”

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Horrendously Horrible in Houston

Official Tennessee Titans Fan Reporter

The Titans embarrass themselves against divisional rival Houston Texans with a loss 57-14.

By Karen Christensen  // @ksc47

Tennessee Titans 15 Houston Texans 57

When your team loses this bad, it makes you overthink everything.  How in the world could they just play so bad for four quarters and not make any adjustments to turn the tide?  I hope the team regroups and reassembles and rises out of the ashes like a phoenix. Or like an NFL team with a will to win like the team that played against the Seattle Seahawks last week.

The tone of the game was set right from the start when quarterback Marcus Mariota threw a pass that was intercepted by Texan safety Andre Hal in the first quarter. Except for the two touchdowns Mariota ran in himself, there just were not many plays by the Titans that were anything to get excited about.   

Matt Cassel in at QB by Donn Jones AP Titans online

Mariota suffered a hamstring injury during his second touchdown run and did not return to the game. Matt Cassel was in at QB in the second half of the game and this was not a good look at all. Cassel had three turnovers and zero points…the turnovers added 13 points for the Texans. Lawd, have mercy, what a mess.

I kept hoping that the Titans would get a run game going, that running backs DeMarco Murray and Derrick Henry would be able to get some touchdowns since Cassel wasn’t exactly throwing the football where he needed to be throwing it, but it wasn’t to be.

The Titans defense had no answer to the Texans’ rookie quarterback Deshaun Watson who had five touchdowns. Embarrassing. The Titans didn’t seem to have an answer to the Houston’s wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins either.  Tennessee rookie cornerback Adoree Jackson had a rough time covering Hopkins (maybe the height difference hindered him) and why defensive coordinator Dick Lebeau did not move the more experienced cornerback Logan Ryan to cover Hopkins earlier is questionable. The Titans defense was just absent.  Defensive tackle Jurrell Casey got his first QB sack this season and safety Kevin Byard got his career first interception, but that was about all folks.

Kevin Byard tackles DeAndre Hopkins  Donn Jones, AP Titans Online

In his Monday press conference, head coach Mike Mularkey revealed that Mariota has a hamstring sprain and may be able to play this Sunday in Miami against the Dolphins. His status is officially “day to day.” In addition to Mariota’s injury, Mularkey said that he doesn’t expect safety Johnathan Cyprien or wide receiver Corey Davis to play this next Sunday due to hamstring injuries.

The Titans are still at the top of the AFC South, 2-2 the same as the Texans and Jags, with the Colts at the bottom.  The Titans play the Texans again in December, so the coaching staff has plenty of time to come up with a new plan for that match up.  

The Titans are on the road again for their next matchup, traveling to Miami to face the 1-2 Dolphins, who lost to the New Orleans Saints 20-0 last week. So this matchup involves two teams with embarrassing losses that most likely will be trying their best to play hard to save face and get back on top of their game. Per TitansOnline:

We are already on to Miami,” Mularkey said. “We’re trying to get the taste out of our mouths. We have a lot of football left. There’s seven 2-win teams and six 3-win teams and we’re right in the middle of them in this first quarter of the season.”

This fan is ready for all of the Titans players to get healthy and work together as a well oiled machine.  This loss was not fun. It hurt to watch the guys out there after allowing a 30-point first half with no adjustments and no answers to the Texans’ pounding. For the December 3 re-match the coaches better have a plan! The Dolphins are up next so time for a total turn around by all three parts of this Titans organization. 

Want to talk Titans with Karen?  Find her on Twitter @ksc47

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Titans Celebrate First Win at Home

Official Tennessee Titans Fan Reporter

By Karen Christensen // @ksc47

Titans beat Seattle Seahawks 33-27 in Music City

After another slow start with a score of 9-7 at the end of the first half, the only Titans’ scores coming from three field goals from place kicker Ryan Succop; the Titans finally got the train rollin’ in the third quarter.  In that respect, this game was eerily similar to the previous game against the Jacksonville Jaguars with very little action in the beginning and then a whole lot of excitement at the end.  

The best Tennessee plays in the beginning ended up being taken away.  Wide receiver Eric Decker made a great sideline catch with some “toe drag swag” as Good Morning Football Show would say, keeping his toes in bounds and getting a first down during the first quarter.   Decker would later be called for a holding penalty so a touchdown run by quarterback Marcus Mariota was called back. 

Cornerback Adoree Jackson had an 80 yard punt return for a touchdown that was overturned due to an illegal block by running back David Fluellen in the second quarter.  The call was a bit on the “iffy” side in my opinion.  It looked like Seattle Seahawks cornerback Shaquill Griffin actually ran into Fluellen, but I’m not an NFL referee.  Sure would have been lovely to have those two touchdowns light a fire for the Titans.

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