The Jets were able to exploit all of the Titans’ weaknesses. The likes of Qunnien Williams, C.J. Mosley, John Franklin-Myers and Quincy Williams got after Ryan Tannehill early and often, sacking him an astounding seven times. Tannehill has now been sacked a league-leading 17 times through four weeks.
Without further ado, here is how the Titans deployed their players against the Jets, via the team’s official snap count report.
At receiver, it was no surprise to see Nick Westbrook and Josh Reynolds lead the position in snaps. Both Westbrook and Reynolds were thrusted into starting roles on the outside given the injuries to A.J. Brown and Julio Jones. Reynolds had a pretty good showing, (6-59) but Westbrook is no more than a WR5. Chester Rogers manned his usual spot as the team’s starting slot receiver, and played a hefty amount of snaps (61 of 93). Rogers caught five balls for 63 yards. Cameron Batson was the WR4 (23 snaps). His lone catch of the day was the game-tying TD with 3 seconds left in the fourth quarter. Rookie receiver Racey McMath played 13 snaps as the WR5. This group was deployed in appropriate fashion given the circumstances.
Derrick Henry played just 59.1% of the snaps (55). It was a result of the Titans trailing in the second half, teamed with their issues in pass protection. Jeremy McNichols is the third down back due to his ability to catch balls coming out of the backfield. He’s also stout in pass pro. McNichols played 37 snaps and led the team in receptions (8) and receiving yards (74). The Titans had two fullbacks active, but rarely used them. Khari Blasingame played three snaps and Tory Carter played two. That’s five plays total for two fullbacks. Make it make sense.
Anthony Firkser led the tight ends in snaps with 46 (49.5%). It was disappointing to see Firkser make such a little impact in the passing game (3-23) given the injuries here. Geoff Swaim played 31 snaps, and MyCole Pruitt played 25. I’d like to see Pruitt outsnap Swaim going forward. He’s clearly the better player. Tommy Hudson, the TE4, played just 17 snaps before exiting the game with an injury.
David Quessenberry and Nate Davis were the lone O-lineman to play all 93 snaps. Both players were bad. Quessenberry, who has started the season in fine form, had a nightmare on Sunday. He routinely struggled and gave up multiple sacks. Davis has been bad all year long. I’m not sure what’s going on with him, but he has to turn it around quickly. Taylor Lewan played 83 snaps (89.2%) and was momentarily replaced by Ty Sambrailo at left tackle, who totaled 33 snaps. Ben Jones played 80 snaps and was replaced by Aaron Brewer for a short period of time due to injury. It was long enough for Brewer (34 total snaps) to make a negative impact on the game by airmailing a key third down snap over Tannehill’s head. Brewer also had to fill in at left guard after Rodger Saffold (just 53 of 93 snaps) was evaluated for a concussion. This group has to be way better before they get Tannehill hurt.
The Titans went heavy here with six active defensive lineman. It was a result of asking Denico Autry to pull double duty by sometimes playing as a stand-up outside linebacker out on the edge. All in all, Autry played 49 snaps and was the Titans’ best player on Sunday. Jeffery Simmons led the way with 56 snaps (93.3%) but failed to make a large impact on the game. Teair Tart played 41 snaps and did the dirty work up the middle. Amani Bledsoe, who reunited with the Titans just earlier this week, was the DL4 with 31 snaps to his name. It was a minor surprise to see him get this much work, but he played a solid game. Naquan Jones played just nine snaps, with Woodrow Hamilton playing just seven. This group was actually quite good on Sunday. It was the rest of the defense that let them down.
Harold Landry was once again excellent while leading the way with a whopping 59 (98.3%) snaps. It’s nearly impossible to allow Landry to catch his breath with all the injuries to this group right now, but the Titans need to tread lightly when it comes to burning out Landry once again. He’s been in fine form this season, and was really good on Sunday as well. David Long matched Landry’s snap count but failed to make a positive impact. It was not a good performance for Long, who had a bad day in coverage and failed to do anything of note in the front seven. Rashaan Evans outsnapped Jayon Brown 42-19. Evans played poorly. Brown must still be nursing an injury. It was a mini surprise to see Ola Adeniyi play just 18 snaps on defense. He was legit good last week. You figured he would play more given the injuries to Bud Dupree, Rashad Weaver and Derick Roberson. This was odd. Sharif Finch played just five snaps. Nick Dzubnar and Monty Rice didn’t play on defense.
This group continues to let the big play kill them. Call it mental breakdowns, miscommunication or whatever, but it’s an issue that needs fixing. Kevin Byard (60 snaps) and Dane Cruikshank (58) played a ton of snaps at safety, but failed to make a positive impact. Cruikshank had an awful DPI on Corey Davis. We have no idea what he was doing there. Kristian Fulton played 55 snaps. He started well with an INT, but was later moved to the slot where he struggled. It was a puzzling decision to move him to the slot. It happened because starting slot corner Chris Jackson played just 12 snaps before exiting with an injury. It’s telling the Titans opted to move Fulton inside (putting Breon Borders, 21 snaps) outside instead of simply subbing in Elijah Molden (0 snaps) into the nickel. Molden started the season poorly. It seems he’s in the doghouse now. Jackrabbit Jenkins played 59 snaps and was routinely burned by Keelan Cole. This group was downright terrible.