Last night's game versus the Green Bay Packers was pretty disappointing if everyone is being honest. I'm sure Ken Whisenhunt was excited to see the Titans finally playing in some bad weather after an unusually cool training camp, but it was sloppy football to watch.
Despite that, there are a few things that can be taken away from Saturday night's game.
-With both Bernard Pollard and Ha-Ha Clinton-Dix on the field, it turns out the hardest hitting safety was Daimion Stafford. Despite a lackluster rookie year, it seems like Stafford has matured into an NFL-caliber hitter if nothing else. I'm not sure exactly what the future is for Stafford, but if the Titans want to go with a lighter goal line package, he could be subbed in for a linebacker if Horton wants to mix things up.
-Taylor Thompson had an up and down game, but mostly I was impressed. He doesn't seem like he will ever be a guy to light it up after the catch, but he is showing that he is improving as a route runner. He also made a catch or two in traffic, and I think the combination of HHCD and the rain is what caused him to drop that deep pass early in the game.
-The running backs looked good as a committee. Shonn Greene had a very nice cutback on a goal-to-go run for a touchdown, and Dexter McCluster showed that he can bang in between the tackles with the rest of the RBs. More on Sankey in my next post.
-It was hard to tell anything about the corners in coverage considering the conditions and the shift in play calling, so that battle still has no clear winner.
-Zach Brown looked good when he wasn't on the bench. He is a quick player that ran downhill and made first contact. It seems like the Titans are going to be stricter on players this year, which may be a good thing because when Brown is motivated and focused he is a force.
-Colin McCarthy had a terrible night capped off with an injury. While he was never the most efficient tackler, it is hard to watch him miss tackle after tackle in the backfield. McCarthy may have trouble making this team, which is a shame considering the flashes he showed early in his career.
-Akeem Ayers is another player that really had a chance to stand out but didn't. Ayers penetrated and disrupted plays but never really looked like he was better than the players out on the field in the third quarter. Honestly, just going off of last night's tape, Patrick Bailey looks like a better fit as an edge rusher than Ayers. To be fair, when the field is dry and teams pass more it will be a different story, but for now Ayers has to be concerned.