AFC

Mariota surprises , Titans roll over Patriots

What a weekend it was for fans of Tennessee. The Nashville Predators come back and win in overtime, the Tennessee Volunteers pull an upset against number 11 ranked Kentucky and the Tennessee Titans shock the world against the former AFC champions New England Patriots.

You never can tell which Titans team will show up on game day. The first week, in what was the longest game in NFL history, the Titans lose to the now 5-5 Miami Dolphins. Two weeks later, they hold the Jacksonville Jaguars to six points followed with the win. Next week, they survive against the defending Super Bowl champion Philadelphia Eagles in OT. They then lose the next two straight weeks to the Buffalo Bills (3-7) and Baltimore Ravens (4-5). Needless to say, you never know what team in blue will show up.

Coming off their strong performance on primetime against the Dallas Cowboys. The Titans were more than ready to prove to the NFL they could take on the greatest dynasty of all time. According to My Top Sportsbooks, the Patriots went into the game as one of the top three teams to win the Super Bowl so, of course, expectations were high. Tom Brady looked his age which normally doesn’t happen as he went 21 of 41 for 254 yards and zero touchdowns. It’s hard to win ball games when arguably the greatest quarterback of all time doesn’t throw any touchdowns.

It may have come as a surprise that Brady threw no interceptions but for the Titans, it didn’t. The Titans defense on average allows 328 yards per game which is ranked sixth in the league. They also lead the league in fewest touchdowns allowed in the red zone.

Mariota and the Titans were able to score first with a four-yard touchdown to tight end Jonnu Smith to start the game. After scoring the first points of the game, they never trailed the Patriots. For the second time this season, the Titans began a game with two consecutive touchdown drives. This time it was a 23-yard touchdown pass to receiver Corey Davis. The Patriots were able to score and add a field goal which the Titans matched heading into halftime leading 24-10.

The troll of the century happened and if you missed it, you’re in for a treat. Patriots tried a little trickery having Julian Edelman pass to Tom Brady who fell just short of a first down on third down.

Not even a minute later former Patriots player and now Titans head coach Mike Vrabel played trickery right back.

It wasn’t only a beatdown score-wise. It was a slap in the face to the Patriots. The Titans wanted to make sure they had the slogan down “anything you can do, I can do better. I can do anything better than you.”

Side notes to add: This was the third consecutive game that Derrick Henry has scored a one-yard touchdown run. In addition to adding that, Henry tacked on another touchdown from ten yards out. The Titans only allowed 10 points from the Pats which tied for the third fewest points scored since 2014 from the Patriots. It also makes it the first time since 2016 that Brady and the Pats were held scoreless in the 2nd half.

Luckily, the Patriots have a bye this week to get over the kinks from last week. The Titans will take on the Indianapolis Colts which will be a huge AFC South competition as both teams are starting to rev up their engines halfway through the season.

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Preston Bostain
Preston covers the Tennessee Titans and the AFC South for NGSC Sports. He also covers Nashville Predators hockey.
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