Examining the Tennessee Titans’ Week 2 performance against the Houston Texans, breaking down what went right and wrong.
Week 2 in the NFL has ended, and Tennessee Titans fans now have something to finally be excited about besides new jerseys. With a Week 2 win over the Houston Texans in the home opener at Nissan Stadium, there were plenty of things to be excited about for the Titans. In this season-long series, we will go into the good, bad and ugly for the Titans in Week 2. Let’s go!
Let us start with the high notes in the Two-Tone Blue’s first win this NFL season.
SPOILER ALERT: There is much more “good” than there was in week 1.
First Win In The Mike Vrabel Era
The Tennessee Titans and head coach Mike Vrabel have secured their first win of the 2018 season, and even though it was only Week 2, it couldn’t have come at a better time. Not only was it the home opener, but it was against an AFC South rival. Flash back one year ago, in Houston, the Texans rampaged the Titans in a 57-14 loss. To score your first win as a head coach against a division rival, this game couldn’t become anymore perfect. Even though Titan fans would like to see Vrabel 2-0, we can leave Week 1 in the past where it belongs.
Winning With Backups
Here’s a list of starters who did not see action this past Sunday: LT Taylor Lewan, RT Jack Conklin, QB Marcus Mariota, and TE Delanie Walker. If you were to tell me two months ago that these four guys would not see the field and the Titans would beat the Texans, I would have called you nuts, but that is exactly what happened. I don’t believe we gave the depth of this Titans team the credit that they deserve. Blaine Gabbert did what a backup QB in the NFL needs to do in these situations: manage the game. I know this sounds like a negative term, but it really isn’t. With 117 yards on 13 of 20 completions and one touchdown, Gabbert showed how he can manage this Titans offense to a victory.
Aggressive Play Calling
I saved the best for last. Gone are the days of “Field Goal” Fisher and a run, run, pass and punt offense. Finally, the Titans have a coach that is not afraid to be aggressive with his offense. What we saw from the Titans offense in this game was a shift in leadership and into a more dynamic offense that is willing to risk it for the biscuit. The fake punt and going for it on 4th and 1 was so foreign for the Titans, and it was truly refreshing to see this new offense work, even if it was without the main core of the Titans. Also, if Gabbert goes down, I am all in on getting Kevin Byard in as the trigger man for the Titans. That fake punt, which resulted in six points for the Titans was a thing of beauty, and Dane Cruishank made the catch and run look perfect.
There was a lot of good in Week 2 for the Titans, even with all the bad that came from Week 1.
Well, even with all the good we saw in Week 2, there is some bad that needs to be addressed. Not everything’s perfect, right?
The 60 Million Dollar Man Continues To Get Burned
Okay, it’s 61 million, but that doesn’t sound as good. CB Malcom Butler continued his streak of getting burned. In Week 1, Kenny Stills of the Miami Dolphins just plain outran Butler to score on a 75-yard pass from Ryan Tannehill. This past week against the Texans, Will Fuller flew by Butler for a 39-yard touchdpwn that gave the Texans the lead in the fourth quarter. Look, there is a pattern going on here; teams will exploit Butler on deep routes that he is just not able to cover.
Not too much bad to speak about in the Week 2 win, and we will just sweep Corey Davis almost turning the ball over late in the game under the rug where it belongs.
Week 1 was full of ugly, but the same can’t be said for Week 2. Given the situation the Titans faced, I would say, all in all, this game went as well as it could. But, I must find something to put here and I have the perfect fit…
Corey Davis’ Assault On Kareem Jackson
This is more of an ugly situation for the Houston Texans, but we will find a place for it here. A message was sent with stiff arm, elbow, forearm, whatever it was. That message you ask? Don’t mess with the Tennessee Titans, or Corey Davis will make you pay for it.
With a win under their belt, all eyes shift towards Jacksonville in Week 3 for the Titans.