Notable Week 9 Pro Football Focus Grades for the Tennessee Titans

NASHVILLE, TN - NOVEMBER 05: Kevin Byard /

Notable Week 9 Pro Football Focus grades for the Tennessee Titans.

Coming off the bye, the Tennessee Titans were able to get two notable offensive players healthy. Historically, when the Titans play the Baltimore Ravens, it tends to be a close, hard-nosed and tough football game. Mike Mularkey and Jon Robinson’s vision was to build a team that can pull out wins in close, hard-fought games like in Week 9. Their vision was always to bring in players that can perform at a high level and had grit and toughness.

A perfect example of this was Delanie Walker’s determination to play with his injury, a bone bruise, which is an extremely painful injury. Not only did Walker come out and play, but he dominated and had a clutch third down catch that helped the Titans come out with the victory.

Over the past few years, games similar to this one were last, with the Titans dominating most of the game but letting it slip away. That was the Titans of old; the 2017 Titans converted when needed on offense and defense. The offense was able to get key third down conversions and show that this is no Titans team of the past. The Titans defense again played well with a bend-but-don’t break attitude. Yes, they gave up touchdowns late, but they came up when it was needed the most. The Titans defense continues to be an underrated unit in the NFL, but the Pro Football Focus grades say otherwise for Week 9.

Top 5 performances:

DL Jurrell Casey, 92.6 overall grade
LB Wesley Woodyard, 89.3 overall grade
TE Delanie Walker, 86.1 overall grade
Edge Brian Orakpo, 85.5 overall grade
Edge Erik Walden, 84.3 overall grade

Casey continues to dominate and show us why the Titans gave him the big contract extension. Casey earned an 89.8 run grade, which showed, as the Titans allowed just .81 yards before contact on Sunday. He also dominated in pass rush situations, recording an 88 pass rush grade and three pressures, including a sack.

Woodyard was in on 20 tackles in Sunday’s game, which is a franchise record. In Week 7, he had the Titans worst PFF grade, but last Sunday, he led the NFL with the best overall linebacker grade. One of his many tackles was particularly key, when he came up with a huge run stuff in the fourth quarter, which led to the Ravens turning the ball over on downs. Woodyard also played well in pass coverage, allowing just 33 yards on eight targets and recording an 83.4 overall coverage grade.

As I have said before, Walker made a statement and showed his toughness by playing hurt. Walker came up huge and made several big plays for the Titans within a limited role. He was only in on 32 plays, but Walker excelled. He averaged 3.67 yards per route run and had zero drops on the day. Walker also recorded an 84.9 receiving grade.

I have been preaching that the Titans need to draft a young edge rusher in next year’s draft. I think that Orakpo and Walden heard me, as both players excelled in all defensive situations. Orakpo, to me, has been a constant playmaker for the Titans this year. He recorded an 81.5 pass rush grade and an 81.7 run defense grade, which are both above average.

Walden has been the Titans’ third pass rusher and has been rather quiet for the Titans, but he played well this week. Walden recorded an 80.8 in pass rush defense and 84.3 run defense. The Titans don’t have many sacks this season, but they have been getting pressure on the quarterback. Both players need to continue to play at a high level as the Bengals come into town on Sunday.

Notable Performances:

QB Marcus Mariota, 80.5 Overall Grade

Mariota has not had great numbers like he did last year, but he continues to make plays when they are needed the most. He did have a poor interception late in the game on an overthrown ball. When the game was on the line, he executed at a high level and scored when the Titans needed it. Mariota has struggled in his young career throwing the ball deep, but found some success Sunday. He was 4-for-7 with 93 yards and a touchdown, plus the interception, when tossing the ball over 20 yards.

Jack Conklin, 80.7 Overall Grade

On Sunday, Conklin was the best lineman for the Titans as the line continues to struggle. He struggled in pass protection, recording a pass protection grade of 56.7. Even with the Titans’ run game struggles, his run blocking grade is a different story (84.5). The Titans line as a whole needs to continue to improve if the Titans want to make a playoff run.

Jayon Brown, 79.2 Overall grade

Brown continues to dominate in pass coverage with an 82.1 grade. This is what the Titans needed: a linebacker who can cover. Where he continues to struggle is in the run game, recording a 65. This will come with more experience as he continues to grow as a player.

Adoree Jackson, 77.3 Overall Grade

Seeing Jackson run the ball on offense was exciting for all Titans fans, as he is a playmaker when he touches the ball. The Titans need a dynamic playmaker on offense like Jackson. My hot take is the Titans take a running back this year in the draft with a skill set similar to Jackson. Needless to say, even though Jackson had a nice 20 yard rush, he played well in pass coverage, recording a 77.2 grade. He is improving right in front of our eyes and is showing he can be a dominant cornerback.

Kevin Byard 77.3 Overall Grade

The NFL leader in interceptions, Byard continues to dominate in coverage situations, recording an 82.5. Titans fans knew Byard was going to be a special player last year when he broke Middle Tennessee State’s interceptions record during his college career. Byard has been a dominant run stuffer as well, but he struggled in Week 9 with a 45.5 grade. The Titans defense needs to continue to feed off of Byard’s success and hopefully can turn a weakness into a strength.

Corey Davis 66.5 Overall Grade

Finally, we got to see Davis play again after missing a few games. He played a limited role, with only 39 snaps and two catches for 28 yards. Already, he showed us that he can be a reliable receiver for Mariota with the beautiful sideline catch he made. As he gets back into football shape and the chemistry between him and Mariota starts flowing, he will be an exciting player to watch.

Taylor Lewan 35.9 Overall Grade

Our Pro Bowl left tackle might have had his worst game as a pro, recording his lowest grades of the season and also the lowest grade for the Titans in Week 9. His pass blocking grade was a 39.7 and run blocking was a 34.5, both the lowest on the team. The Titans line continues to struggle this year and we hope the line can bounce back in the latter half of the season.

Week 10 Projected Starting Line Ups

Winning is everything, but you can’t celebrate too much as the NFL is a week to week league. As the Titans forge along, they face a Bengals team that is looking to bounce back. Let’s take a look at the Titans projected week 10 lineups.