Adoree’ Jackson set the tone for the night with a disastrous decision to try to pick up a rolling punt. He kicked the ball out of his own hands and Jacksonville recovered, leading to an easy touchdown pass on the very next play.
From there, things somehow got worse. The offensive line couldn’t create any space to get Derrick Henry going and they couldn’t protect Marcus Mariota either, giving up 9 sacks which brings their season total to a whopping 17 through 3 games. The 49ers have given up 4 pressures so far... PRESSURES.
Mariota didn’t necessarily help things. He missed some easy throws and, once again, spent too much time sitting in the pocket. Maybe the throws weren’t open downfield. It’s hard to say without seeing the All-22, but the ball almost never comes out in rhythm with this passing offense right now. The fact of the matter is that defenses do not fear Mariota’s ability to beat them downfield or take advantage when they blitz. That’s going to continue to exacerbate the issues along the offensive line until the offense is able to punish them for exposing their secondary.
Arthur Smith’s playcalling was baffling. Whether it was two early runs on 2nd and 19 and 2nd and 20 or just general lack of flow, things are not working on this offense. And that’s putting it very nicely. This thread is not promising.
Look at these calls & try not to— Warren Sharp (@SharpFootball) September 20, 2019
Out of 6 offensive plays for the Titans on the first series:
1 & 10 RUN
2 & 8 RUN
2 & 10 RUN
2 & 20 RUN
The Titans were victimized early by some very questionable calls, particularly holding penalties on offense that set them behind the sticks frequently. Some of those calls — and non-calls — were unquestionably wrong, however they also weren’t anywhere near the reason the Titans got stomped.
Jamil Douglas was totally outclassed by Calais Campbell and was eventually pulled for Aaron Stinnie late in the game. Afterwards, Mike Vrabel was asked about Nate Davis and his comment was that “Nate is going to have to play for us”. He made it sound like there was at least a chance that the third round pick might be in the mix to start at right guard when the team emerges from their upcoming mini-bye. He certainly can’t be worse than what we saw from Douglas tonight.
Defensively, the Titans weren’t quite as big a disaster. Malcolm Butler got beat on a couple really nice throws from Gardner Minshew, but they were able to hold the Jaguars to just 12 first downs in the game. The run defense was outstanding with the exception of one long run late in the second half. The pass rush struggled to get pressure on Minshew, but the secondary mostly held up in spite of the lack of help.
This was a team loss. Bad coaching, bad offense, bad special teams, and no big plays from the defense to offset it. Not to get too grim here, but the Titans are reeling right now. They’ll enter Week 4 in last place in the AFC South, sporting a 0-2 division record already. This franchise hasn’t won in Houston since 2012 and has beaten the Colts in Indy just once since 2007. They’ll need to end at least one of those droughts if they’re to have any hope at winning the division, and frankly, it’s hard to see either of those things happening. After a promising start, this Titans team — especially the offense — looks to have run completely off the rails. If things don’t get corrected immediately, this season could go south very quickly.
Disappointed isn’t strong enough of a word. Mike Vrabel’s post-game comments made it sound like some personnel changes might be coming, though his remark that Ryan Tannehill was “not close” to being put into the game makes me believe that starting quarterback will not be one of those adjustments. The next 10 days should be about soul-searching in Saint Thomas Sports Park and those who aren’t getting it done need to be pulled for those who can. That was one of the worst performances of the Jon Robinson era. Really bad football. I’m sick...