After a brutal start to the 2021 season, the Titans needed a bounceback moment. On Sunday afternoon in Seattle, they found that moment in an absolutely wild game of football.
Russell Wilson started hot, finding Tyler Lockett for 51 yards. That big play led to an early field goal for Seattle, who took an early 3-0 lead. After an opening drive punt, Todd Downing’s unit got rolling with A.J. Brown and Geoff Swaim for big plays, as the Titans also got started with a field goal.
Julio Jones got involved in the second quarter, catching a 50 yard strike, and then another one for 15 more yards. The drive was spoiled by a Josh Reynolds penalty, but Randy Bullock was able to connect on his second field goal of the day. Seattle answered quickly though. It was Lockett again, who beat rookie Elijah Molden for a 63 yard score. Lockett burned Molden on the play, securing the catch and doing the rest himself.
A Ryan Tannehill sack-fumble would setup the Seahawks to take control of this game. It was a play-action call that went wrong, just as we saw happen a few times last week against the Cardinals.
Chris Carson immediately cashed in, putting Seattle ahead 17-6.
With under five minutes to play, Tannehill was able to bounce back. A screen to Derrick Henry and another 20 yard pickup from Julio Jones had the Titans in scoring range. A Tannehill-Jones touchdown was taken off the board, which forced another field goal from Bullock.
They overturned this. What do y'all think? https://t.co/9lS9nWIcGz— Tennessee Titans (@Titans) September 19, 2021
Russell Wilson was able to put together yet another touchdown drive in the two-minute drill, with Chris Carson finding the endzone again. That sequence was an 11 point swing, and it left the Titans trailing 24-9 at the halftime break.
Needing an answer, the Titans found one with an 80 yard drive, aided by key penalties from the Seahawks. Derrick Henry scored on a really nice cut back, keeping the Titans in the game at 24-16. Tennessee came up with a stop on the next drive, very suddenly back in the thick of this one.
Back to back drops by A.J. Brown and Julio Jones didn’t help the next drive, but a clutch third down conversion from Chester Rogers did. Seattle bowed up once the Titans entered scoring range, forcing a stop on a third and five. Vrabel opted to kick another field goal, but this time Bullock missed.
Wilson didn’t waste any time on his next chance. Freddie Swain came wide open — a good 20 yards behind the Tennessee secondary — scoring on a 68 yard catch and run. It was another busted coverage for the Titans, and Wilson continued to make them pay.
A missed extra point kept the score at 30-16, with 13:06 to play.
Just when you were ready to bury the Titans, King Henry ripped off a 60 yard touchdown. Henry had been wearing down the Seattle front, slowing coming alive as the game went. Kristian Fulton batted a pass away from DK Metcalf to force a three and out on the next series, and out came Ryan Tannehill with a chance to tie the game.
And it was Tannehill doing damage on the ground to begin the drive. He converted a third and one with a sneak, then added 18 more after. A Seattle taunting call added 15 more yards, and the Titans were inching closer to a chance at tying this game. However, a sack on second and ten but Tannehill in a third and forever situation — one that they nearly converted with Julio Jones.
This time Vrabel went for it on fourth and two, and pressure forced an incompletion from Tannehill. Playing without Taylor Lewan, and now without Rodger Saffold who left the game earlier, the offensive line folded in a key spot.
Once again it was on the Tennessee defense, and once again they came through with a stop. Derrick Henry and Julio Jones got the Titans past midfield quickly as the two-minute warning struck. Downing stuck with Henry, who suddenly had plenty of room to operate. Chunk runs carried the Titans into the redzone, as the clock ran under one minute.
With 32 seconds left, Henry churned down to the one. On the next play, he scored. Bullock connected on the PAT to tie things up at 30. Russell Wilson got the ball back with 29 seconds and two timeouts, but was unable to do anything with it. To overtime we went.
The Titans got their drive started with a Seattle personal foul — roughing the passer on Jamal Adams to convert on third down. However, back to back drops by A.J. Brown and Chester Rogers set up third and 15, and Tannehill couldn’t convert it.
One more time, the Tennessee defense stood tall. Third and ten turned into fourth and forever after a Titans sack at the goal line. Wilson appeared to fall back into his own endzone, but the officials ruled that he was down at his own one. That turned into outstanding field position after the punt, as the Titans set up shop in Seattle territory.
Derrick Henry pushed forward quickly, moving the ball down to the 25 yard line.
The game fell on the shoulders of kicker Randy Bullock — and he drilled it from 36 yards out for the win.
Final Score: Titans 33, Seahawks 30
The Titans will host the Colts next Sunday.