The Titans had won two straight over Josh Allen and the Buffalo Bills, but this year, these Bills are simply on a different level.
Allen went straight to work out of the gates, converting three third downs on his way to a 7-0 lead. The Titans got off to a pretty good start offensively, working in Treylon Burks and Austin Hooper to work their way down the field to respond.
However, they ended up losing left tackle Taylor Lewan on the drive, and he was unable to return. Dennis Daley took his place, and that was a rough development considering how good this Bills’ front is.
The Titans continued to fight in the first quarter, coming up with a key fourth down stop to force Allen and company off of the field. They weren’t able to cash in with any points though, leaving the door open for the Bills to take control.
And they did.
Buffalo added a field goal, and then scored with Stefon Diggs to go up 17-7 late in the second quarter. Bud Dupree and Ola Adeniyi both dealt with injuries during that stretch, and only Adeniyi was able to return. That’s bad news with Harold Landry already out for the season.
The Bills took a 17-7 lead into halftime. Derrick Henry had just 12 yards at the break.
No Kristian Fulton tonight meant a whole lot of Roger McCreary and Caleb Farley. Even with Gabriel Davis not playing, the Titans got torched. Stefon Diggs and Josh Allen got whatever they wanted all night long, and that culminated with a 46 yard touchdown pass to open the third quarter scoring.
Kyle Philips muffed a punt shortly after, giving the Bills the ball at the Tennessee 20. The Titans came up with a defensive answer to force a field goal, but Tyler Bass added three points to make it 27-7.
The Bills picked off Ryan Tannehill on a tip drill on the next series.
They pick-sixed him on the next one. Malik Willis took over from there.
Final Score: Bills 41, Titans 7
Injuries added up for the Titans, but let’s face it — Tennessee was simply overmatched in this spot. Todd Downing dialed up yet another clunker, filled with several drive-ending run calls on second and long.
Tonight wasn’t close, and if this is who you have to go through to win the AFC, it’s tough to have an optimistic take on this group going forward. Still yet, with all of that said, the AFC South looks awfully weak. Long season ahead, but you can’t draw up a worse start.
The Titans host the Raiders next week.