TitansOnline.com Senior Writer and Editor Jim Wyatt offers six things that stood out in Sunday’s victory over the Jaguars.
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Here’s a look at six things that stood out for the Titans in Sunday’s win over the Jaguars:
Derrick Henry’s powerWhen I looked at the snap count from Sunday, I was surprised to see running back Derrick Henry played just 30 of the team’s 68 snaps on offense. That’s because Henry made such an impact during the game. Henry bulldozed his way for 92 yards on 14 carries — a 6.6-yard average. He was stiff-arming guys left and right, and on his 17-yard touchdown run he ran right through Jaguars cornerback Jalen Ramsey. Henry said he wanted to make Ramsey “feel me.” It’s safe to say Henry is earning more snaps.
Rush to Delanie defense
Speaking of Ramsey, tight end Delanie Walker didn’t like his late shove after he crossed the goal-line on his touchdown run. Ramsey was penalized, and Walker let it go, explaining in the locker room: “I was upset at first and then I looked up at the scoreboard and saw we were blowing them out of the water.” The Titans had Walker’s back. Jack Conklin, Ben Jones, Quinton Spain, Jonnu Smith and Phillip Supernawarrived at the scene in a hurry, and Taylor Lewan made his way over to the scrum rather quickly. Walker was ticked, so he probably didn’t need the help. But the impromptu gathering was a sign the Titans weren’t going for it.
Rookie contributionsOn many weeks I’m going to be writing about receiver Corey Davis in this space, but he was limited to just one catch on Sunday, in part because of a hamstring issue. But other draft picks made big plays. Adoree’ Jackson turned in a big punt return, and was solid in coverage on defense. Jonnu Smith had a 32-yard touchdown catch, and Taywan Taylor made a diving catch for a 42-yard gain. Linebacker Jayon Brownmade a big hit in pass defense while playing 30 snaps on D. So many young players contributed in Sunday’s win, and that’s a great sign moving forward for the Titans.
Titans wore them down
It was hot in Jacksonville – 84 degrees at kickoff (with 59 percent humidity) and the temperature only went up from there. After a training camp that included a lot of San Diego-like days, at least some wondered how the Titans might handle the weather conditions. Well, it looked to me like the Titans wore the Jaguars down in the second half, when they scored 31 of their 37 points. The conditioning level was good, and it paid off on a day when the Titans used a combination of run and pass to win, along with a swarming defense.
Supernaw’s shimmyOK, you might’ve missed this one. If so, check out the kickoff after Henry’s touchdown run. There you will find Supernaw racing downfield to deliver a jarring hit on Jaguars returner Corey Grant. The hit was impressive, but what came after it – Supernaw’s shimmy – probably deserves a mention as well. Supernaw is a gritty player who has fun on the field, in practices and games. Let’s just say he likes to stir it up a bit. His quick dance moves got the attention of linebacker Wesley Woodyard, who joined in and slapped hands with Supernaw at the conclusion. So you think you can dance? Supernaw does.
Jake Locker – not Marcus Mariota – was a baseball player, but the current Titans quarterback has proven he’s pretty good at sliding himself. His technique is good, and he proved it again on Sunday when he slid trying to avoid taking a big hit. Smart move. Only Mariota might still need to work on his timing. If you recall, Mariota took a hit up high, even after he was down. Some of you messaged me about it on Twitter. Mariota said after the game it wasn’t dirty, and coach Mike Mularkey said Mariota actually slid a little late, and the defender didn’t have time to bail. Moving forward, Mariota probably needs to end the journey a second sooner in the danger zone.