The Tennessee Titans set an NFL record today… And it wasn’t a good one either. They set the record for most players played in a single season, and it’s only week 12. Usually, if you are playing 80+ players it means your team is bad, but the Titans head into their bye week 8-4, and 2-2 without Derrick Henry. They stood no chance today, vs. the New England Patriots, as they had a total of 15 players on IR, and another 8 players hurt, with 2 more getting injured during the game. Among the 15 on IR was the King, and star receivers, AJ Brown, and Julio Jones. So no wonder they got blown out, 36-13 in Foxboro, but the game was closer than the score indicates.
The Titans started out with a 3-and-out, and the Pats turned that into a TD, with a beautiful fade route from Kendrick Bourne, and an even better throw by Mac Jones.
Photo: Billie Weiss / Getty Images
It was a very convincing drive, and it looked like the Titans were going to get buried, but Ryan Tannehill had other plans. He led the Tennessee offense down the field, on an 8-minute drive, and hit paydirt, on a screen pass to Nick Westbrook-Ikhine. But Randy Bullock missed the PAT, and the score stayed at 7-6 New England. The Patriots then got deep in Tennessee territory, but the Titans defense held, and forced Nick Folk to try a field goal, which he of course made. That made the score 10-6, Pats. Tannehill drove the 2nd string offense into Patriot territory, but Randy missed the 44-yarder. You better be filling out applications at McDonalds… Sorry, I had to. Anyways, Mac-and-co. failed to score a touchdown in the red zone, so Bill had Folk attempt a chip shot field goal, and he made it to make it a touchdown game, at 13-6. The Titans had a chance to gain some momentum, but 4th-stringer, Dontrell Hilliard fumbled, to set up another Folk field goal, this one at 44-yards.
Photo: George Walker IV / Tennessean
Money Folk made it, to make the score 16-6, New England. But Mike Vrabel had trust in Hilliard, and it paid off. He ran away from the Boogymen, and scored on a 68-yard gallop! Bullock made the extra point to cut the New England lead to 3, at 16-13.
The Pats got to the 36, and had Folk try a 53-yarder, which he surprisingly missed. That was the score going into the half. Tennessee had done really well, but in the second half they had more turnovers, and just ran out of steam.
New England got the ball to start, and got into Tennessee territory, but once again the Titans held, and forced Nick to try a field goal. It was a 28-yarder, which he easily made. 19-13 Patriots. The Titans offense didn’t help their defense, as D’Onta Foreman broke loose, but fumbled, and Jalen Mills recovered it. Mac couldn’t do anything, as pro bowl safety, Kevin Byard sacked him on 3rd down. The Boogymen got the horrid Titans offense to punt, and Mac-and-Cheese found Bourne again, this time the receiver walked the tightrope, and took it in from 41-yards out, a back-breaking score.
Photo: Billie Weiss / Getty Images
That made the score 26-13. Tennesse got down to the Pats 2, but Tannehill threw a pass that was tipped, and picked by Mr. Int, JC Jackson. The Patriots got a 54-yard field goal out of their drive, and then their defense forced the Titans go out on down. Then Damian Harris rushed for a TD (which helped my fantasy team!), to make the score 36-13. The Titans fumbled, and New England kneeled, to end the game. Bill finally solved the Vrabel problem, and got the number one seed in the AFC. For now…
The whole team showed a lot of fight, and the defense got a lot of stops.
You can’t beat Bill Belichick without your RB1, RB2, WR1, WR2, best pass rusher, 3 MLB’s, and your 3rd down back. It just doesn’t happen.
The Patriots haven’t had their first real test. If the Titans were fully healthy this would be a very different outcome, to say the least.
The turnovers have to stop. We can’t keep having 3+ turnover games. You don’t win that way.
Dontrell Hilliard balled out. Week 14 could be a big game from the offense, especially if Julio is back.
Fantasy Performer of the Week
This weeks Fantasy Performer of the Week goes to, drumroll please………. Kendrick Bourne, with 23.10 fantasy points! He has found a good fit in Josh McDaneils’ system, and could have good games in the future.
My MVP, Improvement, Breakout, and What’s Next
My MVP of the game goes to Dontrell Hilliard! He had a great game, and Week 14 should be a prove it for him, to keep his job. My improvement goes to Randy Bullock. Stop missing kicks. It will cost us big time. My breakout for next game goes to the offense as a whole. Julio should be back, and they should get better with him back. Next week is the Titans bye week, but in Week 14 they will face the Jacksonville Jaguars. The Pats on the other hand get their first test, in the Buffalo Bills, who just destroyed the Saints, on Thanksgiving. TitanUp!