In what may very well have been the most disgusting Titans game since the humiliating loss to the Patriots last year, the Titans gave up the playoff ghost to a winless Colts team, just a week after almost beating the New Orleans Saints. I personally am laying this loss on the Titans coaching staff. Why you say? Because it is their fault. Palmer refused to call a deep pass play until the game was almost out of reach in the 4th quarter, which lead to Titans players being forced to tryand milk every play for as much as they could, which results in the fumble by Jared Cook early in the 4th, a huge blow to the teams comeback chances. I’m just skimming top of everything that was wrong with the game today….
The Titans should have sat Hasselbeck today, plain and simple. They adjusted the playbook to make it easier on Hasselbeck and it lead to an unforgivable amount of three and outs. Jake Locker should of started as the healthier of the two quarterbacks. It was a bad call by Munchak in an attempt to avoid any quarterback controversy. It wasn’t until there was but 6 minutes left in the 4th quarter that Locker was put in for Hasselbeck after Hasselbeck’s second interception of the game. Locker gave the Titans a touchdown within 2 minutes of stepping on the field after a 7 yard touchdown pass to Nate Washington.
The biggest problem with the game today was the play calling on both offense and defense.
Defense just wasn’t aggressive enough. We played zone and let a bad quarterback and a weak run game have their way when we should have blitzed them all day. Michael Griffin gave away a key touchdown to Reggie Wayne and would late run in to Orlovsky, opening an 80 yard door for Brown to run in what would be the game clenching touchdown. It was a poor showing by a defense that is better than it played.
Palmer infuriated me with his over use of screens and short passes. The Colts just called zone coverage all day because that’s all they had to do to stop a pathetic playbook. The ball was finally moving down field in the 4th quarter when Palmer was forced to call deep passing routes in hopes of getting back into the game. The problem with that? It became forced and ended with us turning over the ball twice. They should have been called much sooner against one of the leagues most pathetic pass defenses in order to set the tone, but weren’t
There were a couple bright spots in this otherwise repulsive game.
Lavelle Hawkins showed why he’s stuck with the Titans for all these years. He played his heart out and did everything he could to get yards. He also played really smart at the end, doing his best to find the sideline when he couldn’t push the ball any further down the field.
Jake Locker was Jake Locker. He quickly pushed the Titans into the end-zone after taking over for a benched Hasselbeck. He was held out of the end-zone on an important final drive, quite similar to last weeks, but he moved the ball. The Titans consistently moved the ball with Locker at the helm and threatened to comeback, falling just short on a couple key plays.
Jared Cook will catch the ball if you actually throw it to him. Yes Cook did have a couple freebies at then end as the Colts played a prevent defense. He also had a costly fumble trying to get as much yardage as he could as the Titans fought to get back in a game they let get out of hand. He needs to be a bigger part of this offense. Period.
This unfortunately seems to throw us out of the playoff race. There may be some sort of a distant chance that we can still sneak in, but that door of opportunity just shrunk a bunch.
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