When they played back in early November (week 10) the Titans were able to pull out a win. I think this will be a different challenge but it shows that the titans “can” win this game. Back then, this was Mahomes first game back from injury and he still threw for 440+ yards and 3 TDS, but nothing else was really working for the Chiefs. Less than 100 yards rushing. No INTs but 4 sacks. That was Tannehill’s 4th start but his first statement game where he beat a quality opponent. He only threw for 181 but 2 TDS, with his second TD coming with 23 seconds left to play to put the Titans ahead. What a moment. And that was also Derrick Henry’s first statement game for 2019 where he ran for 188 yards and 2 TDS. It was only his second 100+ yard rushing effort on the year with his first being exactly 100 yards back in week 4. Since that game he has only been held under 100 yards once and has had MONSTER games during this stretch, including two playoff games, and has rushed for 1,273 yards in those 8 games combined. Historic. But the Titans also got a fumble recovery scoop and score for a TD that game and a huge field goal block at the end of regulation to secure the win. That was a statement win for the Titans, for Tannehill, for Henry, for Vrabel, and ideally the perfect game plan for the game again this weekend vs the Chiefs. Run the ball. Control the clock. High percentage passes. Defense and special teams need to manufacture some turnovers and points. Stay calm. Weather the punches. And get a little sprinkle of magic... It’s been their formula. They’ve done it for weeks and weeks. Each week they say "The Titans have to play perfect to win..." and yet they keep winning. So, is it perfect, or just do what they do. Whatever it is, they need to do it one more time to continue on to the big game.
The challenge is that that Titans loss is the last loss the Chiefs have had. They were 6-4 after that game ended with losses to the Titans, Colts, Texans and Packers in the first 10 weeks. Three AFC South teams, which is crazy, and their other potential super bowl matchup the Packers. But that loss to the Titans got under their skin. It changed them. It was a hard fought game that went down to the last play. And they came up short. Mahomes hated to lose his first game back. The team was hurt. Some of them cried. Literally. They have since won 7 straight to now sit 14-4. A great season, but the last bitterness they have felt was due to the Titans. They hated that feeling. They will remember that, definitely, just like some of them remember the Mariota led Titans beating them in 2017 in round one of the playoffs. The Titans have had their number as of late and it is clear to see.
Chiefs Quotes After Blown Lead to Titans
I anticipate both offenses attempting to keep the other offense off the field. Mahomes will attempt to dink and dunk and short rush to run the clock. He will put them to sleep with the short throws and hit Hill over the top once or twice for big gains. The Titans DBs are vulnerable. The titans will do what they do to attempt to keep Mahomes off the field. Henry will get his but I don’t think he can win this one alone like he basically has the last two weeks. Even if he gets 200 and 3 I don’t think it will be enough without help. Mahomes is that good. I “think” Tannehill has the magic to put up points, and even do so quickly. The chiefs defense is vulnerable too. We need AJ Brown to be our Hill, and give us some explosive over the top plays of his own. But will he? Both defenses are basically the same although the Chiefs have done better over the season of limiting points. They only gave up 52 points in their last 5 reg season games combined! That’s legit! But they did just give up 31 to the Texans and looked over matched defensively in the first quarter. And the two coaching staffs are legit as well. A hall of famer on one side and a clear up and coming mastermind (risk taker?) on the other side. The clear difference in this game will be the QBs. Mahomes is the stud kid on campus, like Ferris Bueller where everything typically just goes his way and people hate him for it, and is clearly destined for a gold jacket at this pace, and Tannehill is the nerdy cast away kid with no friends who likes Minecraft as an adult and lives in his parents basement, but recently went to JC Penny and got a makeover and is finally looking and feeling right. Girls are starting to notice him and his confidence is growing. He has a punchers chance. For the sake of fun, I say Tannehill and the Titans pull it off. Nerds rule, Jocks drool! The Titans are destined.
Its going to be a great game. Hopefully.