Well the Titans lost yesterday. I'd say I'm shocked, but that would be a lie. Granted I did feel myself getting reeled into believing they would tie it there towards the end, but of course those dreams were dashed when a couple of penalties were called, and one wasn't called that I feel should have been (DPI on Douglas). As with each loss: we need an #EscapeGoat. Some are already calling for the firing of Mularkey, and other's are deflecting their ire towards Taylor Lewan. Lewan was called for a unnecessary roughness in the final minute of the game yesterday. The penalty was a boneheaded mistake, and cost the team crucial yardage. Was this why the Titans lost? Absolutely not. I suppose it's always easy to deflect our anger towards one single person though. Lewan apologized to the team behind closed doors after the game, and is a little confused on how the penalty was called because, to him, the runner still looked like he was up, and he was going in to try and help his teammate gain more yards. Let's just remember: Lewan didn't commit three turnovers yesterday. That was the fault of....
But first a Quick Hit: Thumbs up, and thumbs down, from yesterday's game.
Marcus Mariota. Dude. What is happening? Three turnovers yesterday. THREE! All off-season we heard you were working on protecting the ball. Where is the evidence of that?! Ok. Sorry. Semi-rant over. It looked like he was going to be able to at least pull off some more "late-game heroics" yesterday, but it all quickly fell apart. He was connecting passes, and moving the team, and for the first time all day it looked like the passing game was working. Why is it the passing game only works when trailing late in the fourth quarter? Sorry. Almost started another semi-rant there again. The team was trailing 17 to 10 with 1:51 left to play, and Mariota connected for a 10 yard pass, 25 yard pass, and then a 23 yard pass. Mariota then threw one to Sharpe that would have put us at the Raider's three yard line, but it was called back due to Lewan's unnecessary roughness call. Mariota then threw one to Andre Johnson in the endzone...but it was called back due to offensive pass interference (grumble). Mariota then through it to Douglas, but the pass fell for an incompletion (and what appeared to be a no-call defensive pass interference. Ticky tack Refs. TICKY TACK!). Story of the day.
Let's check out five things we need to know about yesterday's loss. Number one: Mariota and his struggle to hold onto the ball. I said it up above, but Mariota turned the ball over three times yesterday. Number two: Murray, once again, carried the load. Dude rushed for 114 yards on 16 carries, scored a rushing touchdown, and averaged 7.1 yards per carry. He also had 5 catches for 41 yards. Dude has been putting in work. Number three: The defense bottled up the league's top-rated offense. I sometimes feel like I give this defense too much grief. Number four: Williamson's interception kept the team in the game. Williamson's pick came just a little bit after Mariota's second interception of the game, and allowed the team to stay in the game. Finally: The clock operator nearly cost the Titans. You have one job, clock operator. Thank you (kinda) for messing it up.
Meh. That's all for today. Happy reading!