When I’m at the Titans’ game, it’s a different experience. Every catch, hit, fumble and juke feels personal and emotional. I feel a little detached when I’m watching the game remotely like I did last Sunday.
I have a deal with my buddy Don. I bring over some Spanish wine, and I can watch some Titans on his Sunday Ticket package. I don’t get to see the entire game because Don loves the Red Zone channel, but I get the gist. I saw the key plays, the Titans were victorious, and we moved on to the main event, which was Bears/Packers.
I watched the game again yesterday on NFL Game Rewind. Kudos to those who can watch every game or a few games, because watching one game over again is about all I can handle. I’ll put some stream-of-consciousness thoughts out there instead of a recap, as we know what happened.
Alterraun Verner’s playing really well as third cornerback. Even in their best defensive years, the Titans didn’t have three corners this good.
Jason Jones got a penalty for hitting Kyle Orton in the chest, because he went helmet-first. Later in the game Jones knocks down an Orton pass, gets body-slammed by the Broncos’ offensive lineman after the whistle, and nothing. I can see why defensive linemen get a little testy over fines.
I liked Shaun Smith in the home opener when he said openly to a ref about a call “That was bullshit.” I didn’t like him in the second game when he got a personal foul for ripping the Broncos’ center’s helmet off and got in a shouting match with Derrick Morgan. It’s cool when you’re an NFL player and can’t pull your jersey over your gut, if you make plays.
In the first quarter, the Titans had 45 penalty yards. The penalties are still an issue.
On the first touchdown, the Titans had Daniel Fells quad-covered and let Willis go. Finnegan let Willis go because when you have a scoring machine like Fells in the red zone, three guys doesn’t cut it.
Nate Washington’s catching everything, and I include that pass that was ruled incomplete even though his hands were under the ball the entire time, yet it was confirmed after Munchak threw the challenge flag.
Note to the Broncos: Don’t run McGahee outside again. He’s passable between the tackles but there’s no burst.
On the McCourty interception, Griffin blitzed but was picked up. Orton had a nice pocket. He had to throw over Ruud, who was in a deep zone. Still don’t get why the ball was on a line, which led to the overthrow and the pick. So far this year, the Titans have the “good” McCourty.
Watching Britt coming across the formation on the fateful ACL tear play was like watching a snuff film. I imagine the pain was something he hasn’t felt before, because of the casual way he let the ball fall to the turf.
The Titans were going to score at least three on that drive, so I’ll take the so-called karma of Brett Kern’s mad dash down the sidelines. He probably should have gone out of bounds instead of running into Quan Cosby’s low tackle.
The Titans started the third quarter with an 11-play drive that led to no points.
On the subsequent drive, on third down, Spencer Larsen saved Orton’s ass on third down when he reached to the turf to pick up the errant throw.
Fantasy owners: Eric Decker had an end zone target. That and 12 targets overall/7 catches makes him a fine bye week fill-in.
The Broncos only need 10 more Von Millers and they’re set. He made one play, the strip of Hasselbeck, and it almost won the game.
Titans go offside twice in a row to give the Broncos first and goal inside the two. Yeah, the Broncos had four cracks at it, and ran McGahee up the gut on three of them. If the Broncos score on fourth down, they win despite being outplayed.
I haven’t mentioned Hasselbeck yet. Early in the season he’s been insanely accurate and receivers are pulling in just about everything. I did notice that there were a few errant throws to Hawk/Williams when Britt was carted off the field. They’re going to need some practice time to figure it out.
To win the game, the Titans had to go 95 yards. There are some offensive linemen with better food speed than Craig Stevens, but he was on the receiving end of the biggest play of the day.
Jason Jones tipped the pass that Will Witherspoon intercepted to seal it.
These teams are chippier than Titans/Ravens. It feels personal between them.
And finally, Chris Johnson did make a couple of his signature start/stop moves, pushing away arm tackles. He was deemed the best buy low option in fantasy last week. I still think he’s going to have a solid year.
Titans won by three at home to the Broncos. The Browns are better, and will be at home.