Updated: Jan 9
Cover Photo: Geoff Burke / USA TODAY Sports
In honor of The Return of The King this week, I have compiled a blog of Derrick Henry’s most defining games as a pro. Of course, one of the games is in December, as he dominates at the end of the year, while the other 2 show his playoff dominance, in early January. So, here are El Tractorcito’s 3 best games as a Tennessee Titan:
Titans at Ravens, Divisional Round, 2019-2020. The King had a field day, running all over the number 1 seed Ravens, and even threw for a TD, pulling off the biggest upset of the playoffs.
Titans at Texans, Week 17, 2019-2020. In a win-and-in game, Henry put the team on his back and got the rushing crown, and the win, setting up a matchup with the Pats in the wild card.
Texans at Titans, Week 6, 2020-2021. Once again, Henry had a monster day vs. Houston, as he put together 262 total yards, including a long screen play, to set up his eventual game-winning TD.
Titans at Titans, Week 17, 2020-2021. Another Titans, Texans matchup on Week 17, and this one was huge. Though AJ Brown and Ryan Tannehill won the game, setting up the Sam Sloman game-winner, Henry rushed for 2,000 yards on the year, and humiliated JJ Watt, which was his eventual last game as a Texan.
Photo: Jay Biggerstaff / USA TODAY Sports
Game 1: Playoff Dominance at Arrowhead - 1/6/2018 - TEN 22, KC 21
With starter Demarco Murray out for the Wild Card game, the young Henry had a tough task ahead of him. The Titans fell behind, 21-3 at the half, but came back, with Derrick being a big part of the comeback. He had 23 carries, for 156 yards, and a touchdown. Also during that game, there was the memorable Marcus Mariota pass to himself. Anyways, the Titans had the lead late, 22-21, and all they had to do was get a first down and the game would be over. But Henry appeared to have fumbled in the backfield… But thankfully for Titans fans, he was already down. The King decided to have no more of that, as on the very next play, he ran for a first down, with Mariota giving a great block, and the Titans won the game, 22-21, setting up a Divisional-Round matchup with Tom Brady and the Patriots, which Tennessee lost. But this was Henry’s first big moment, and he produced big time.
Photo: Jim Brown / USA TODAY Sports
Game 2: The King Punishes the Jaguars - 12/6/2018 - TEN 30, JAX 9
Henry has yearly dominance over his home-state team, but he has never had as big of a game as the one on Thursday Night Football, in Nashville. In 2018, Derrick Henry was viewed as a bust. Aside from the game at Arrowhead, he hadn’t done anything as a pro. Everyone was calling for him to get benched. He talked to former Titans star, Eddie George, and George helped him figure it out, in time for TNF. He played angry, and had just 17 carries, for an astounding 238 yards, and 4 TD’s. One of those runs was a record-tying 99-yard touchdown romp, as he was throwing defenders his own size down to the ground. He almost single-handedly carried the Titans to the playoffs, but Mariota got hurt in Week 16, and the Titans failed to get in. Even though he was struggling to the point in his career, The King somehow made it to 1,000 yards that year, finishing with 1,059 on the year. This game proved to be the biggest of his life, as he has never looked back, and has dominated the Jags, and the rest of the league since.
Photo: Adam Glanzman / Getty Images
Game 3: Dynasty Ender - 1/4/2020 - TEN 20, NE 13
20 years, 6 titles, 1 GOAT, and 1 GOAT coach. The New England Patriots, the owners of the league somehow found themselves in the Wild Card round, playing the lowly Tennessee Titans, who had benched their former #2 overall pick, for a scrub named Ryan Tannehill. No problem. Henry came to play on his 26th birthday, and so did the Titans defense. The Pats tried to use their 6-1 front that suffocated the Rams in the Super Bowl, but that worked as well as taunting Michael Jordan did. Henry ran wild, with 34 carries, 184 yards, and a touchdown, as Mike Vrabel’s game plan worked to perfection. Logan Ryan sealed the game with a pick-6 of his former teammate, Brady, and the Titans gave Henry the best birthday gift possible, a 20-13 win! Brady left that offseason, and the dynasty ended, just like that, with 1 big running back, who has wide receiver speed, and a killer stiff arm. Though Mac Jones is doing well, I don’t think he has 6 rings.
Henry has always had the talent, but needed a mentor, and got one in George. Since the time they talked in 2018, the league has suffered, and Henry has had some impressive numbers (and stiff arms). With 3 straight 1,000 yard seasons, one 2k season mixed in, and possibly another 1k one as well, depending on if he plays week 18. But when the playoffs arrive, look out, because the Tennessee Titans will be a Super Bowl contender. If you liked this type of blog, drop some names in the comments or tell me, I will gladly make more blogs of this kind.