The Titans are back in the playoffs, and thank God for that! I think America would rather see the Titans in January as opposed to the Steelers’ lack of offense, so it’s good to see Tennessee take advantage of the Texans resting their star players in a 35-14 blowout victory.
Obviously this isn’t the most impressive victory of the year, but let’s just be glad Tennessee isn’t 8-8 sitting on the couch. And considering the start they had to the season the offensive explosion was well worth it.
On Saturday the Titans travel to Foxboro to face their last playoff opponent in the Patriots. Incredibly, they will not have a first round bye for the first time this decade, and Tennessee will look to get their first win in the postseason against the Patriots in three tries. There’s six days left, so it’s a shorter week for the Boys.
With that said, let’s see what we learned from Sunday’s victory over the rival Texans!
9-7 CAN Be A Good Thing!
The Titans became the second team in NFL history to finish with the same record for four straight seasons, doing so after the 2012-15 Patriots (12-4). No one wants to be 9-7 forever, but for the second time in four seasons the Titans are in the playoffs with that record.
After a 2-4 start all of a sudden we were begging just to even sniff that 9-7 record, and with the quarterback switch the offense found a spark it badly needed under Ryan Tannehill. This was big because the defense has not played so sharp in the second half of 2019, but with an offense that is ridiculously explosive in the air and ground the Titans are willing to give the Patriots a test in Foxboro on Saturday.
A.J. Brown Should No Doubt Be Offensive Rookie Of The Year
The race for Offensive Rookie of the Year doesn’t feel as predictable as it was in previous seasons, most likely due to the fact that there hasn’t been a clear cut candidate for most of the season. Guys like Kyler Murray and Josh Jacobs definitely deserve consideration, but rookie wideout A.J. Brown may have iced it with another star performance.
Brown came through in a big way once again on Sunday with four catches for 124 yards and a touchdown. He broke 1,000 yards receiving on a throw from Marcus Mariota (!!!) in the second quarter, and had a huge 47-yard catch on the second play of the fourth quarter to set up a Derrick Henry touchdown.
Brown finished his first season in the NFL with 1,051 yards and eight touchdowns on 52 catches. His 20.2 yards per reception are the fourth highest from a rookie with at least 60 targets in NFL history, and the most from any rookie receiver in the 21st century. And get this: that’s more than Randy freaking Moss had in his rookie season (19.03)!
That kind of number usually isn’t sustainable but is a testament to how dangerous the rookie has been as a playmaker this season. That’s something the Titans haven’t had in a while in the passing game, so Brown’s impact has been tremendous in 2019.
Derrick Henry Most Likely Cemented A Second Stint In Nashville
Not that Sunday’s game changed anything, but Derrick Henry is a god among mortal men. In his last six games he’s rushed for 896 yards on 139 carries (6.45 yards per carry), 10 touchdowns (yes, ten!), and 149.3 yards per game.
After take Week 16 off due to injury, Henry once again played against the Texans—his week 15 opponent—and took over in the second half. On the day he had 32 carries for 211 yards and three touchdowns as he won the rushing title in 2019 (1,540 yards!).
As far as contract talks go, Henry is a free agent after this season, but I don’t see the front office moving on from him, especially after a monster fourth season. No offers have come yet, but I’m optimistic about them arriving in the near future.
With that said, give us your thoughts in the comment section below on what you learned from Sunday’s win. Titan Up!