RECAP: Tennessee Titans Beat Cincinnati Bengals, Extend Winning Streak

NASHVILLE, TN - NOVEMBER 12: Tight End Jonnu Smith
NASHVILLE, TN - NOVEMBER 12: Tight End Jonnu Smith /

The Tennessee Titans defeated the Cincinnati Bengals 24-20 on Sunday and extended their current winning streak to four games.

It was certainly nerve-wracking at times, but the Tennessee Titans walked home on Sunday afternoon with a fourth straight win after beating the reeling Cincinnati Bengals 24-20. It took until the final drive for the Titans to put away the pesky Bengals, but with the help of QB Marcus Mariota and RB DeMarco Murray, as well as a great defensive performance, the Two-Tone Blue racked up another notch in the win column.

Mariota completed 25-of-44 passes for 264 yards and a touchdown, while adding 51 yards on the ground. Murray accumulated 72 yards and scored three total touchdowns, two on the ground and one through the air. Derrick Henry was effective, totaling 52 yards on 11 totes. Delanie Walker caught six passes for 63 yards, Rishard Matthews caught five passes for 50 yards and Corey Davis racked up 48 yards on four catches, though he lost a costly fumble through the back of the end zone.

Stats won’t tell the full story, but the Titans defense was arguably the main reason the Titans didn’t lose this game. While the offense sputtered throughout the game, the defense was stout and at one point forced five straight punts, in addition to a three-drive stint where they forced two fumbles and a punt in between.

Unfortunately, the Titans defense eventually broke down with just five minutes left to play in the game. Bengals WR A.J. Green, who had been kept relatively quiet (4-45) by a shadowing Logan Ryan, took a quick slant route 70 yards to the house, something he has done so often in his masterful career. That score gave the Bengals a three-point lead with the game winding down.

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The Titans offense had to answer the call after failing to score a single point in the second half to that point. Mariota and the offense embarked on a 12-play, 73-yard, 4:27 drive that featured three run plays and nine pass plays. Aided by some great throw-and-catches and a defensive holding penalty on third-and-five, the Titans found themselves with a third-and-goal from the seven yard line.

A field goal to tie the game was an option had they not converted on third down, but they did.

Mariota dropped back and scanned the field, settling on one of his final reads: an open Murray in the flat. Murray sprinted forward and was met by a Bengals defender, but he kept his legs churning, powered through the tackle and extended the ball past the goal line to put the Titans in front by three. Ryan Succop knocked home the extra point and the Bengals couldn’t muster a touchdown with 36 seconds left.

The win was the Titans’ fourth straight and the third-consecutive victory over an AFC North opponent. They’ll go for the sweep on Thursday night, when they’ll take on the Steelers in Pittsburgh. Currently seven-point road underdogs, the Titans will look to make a statement on national television.