A common theme around the media during the early part of the week is power rankings. Whether they are ranking college football teams, baseball teams, basketball teams, or NFL teams it is something that most major outlets do.
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ESPN and NFL.com are no different, and they are the two that I pay the most attention to during the week. They generally use either a composite ranking to get their list, or they have someone assigned to watch every game before they make their list.
So, let’s take a look at how those two sites ranked the Tennessee Titans in their power rankings.
“It’s better to be lucky than good — and it’s even better to be damn lucky. The Bears dropped a number of footballs on Sunday, including two in the end zone in the waning moments of a six-point game. Tennessee’s defense allowed Chicago backup Matt Barkley to convert 10 of 20 third- and fourth-down chances, while the Bears‘ offense racked up 411 yards. Matt Barkley. The young quarterback nobody paid attention to played his tail off. As for the Titans‘ sophomore quarterback, it was clear by the expression on Marcus Mariota‘s face as he walked off the field that he felt they escaped. Hey, you never apologize for winning. This group is a half-game back in the AFC South.”
I don’t know about all this. Marcus Mariota sort of embarrassed the Chicago Bears defense. It doesn’t show up on the stat sheet, but he really moved the ball at will.
The reason the Titans won that game isn’t because they are lucky. It is because they are conservative, which is probably a bigger issue. If the Titans ever feel like letting Marcus Mariota take over a game, this team would shoot up the power rankings.
However, until all that happens people won’t see just how much this team is capable of.
“Marcus Mariota has thrown multiple touchdown passes in eight straight games and has a league-leading 21 touchdowns since Week 5. Mariota and the Titans finally get a break in the form of a bye this week.”
Again, this is amazing considering when the Titans are ahead, they really completely pull off the gas.
Mariota is in some amazing company, and he is start to edge his way into the top 5 in a lot of key categories like 3rd and 4th down passer rating, TDs, etc.
Everything is starting to click for this team, and if they wanted to show off the game would have been a lot worse on Sunday.