Playing Marcus Mariota at less than 100 percent is better than having Matt Cassel or Brandon Weeden at full strength. After missing the last six quarters of football and watching the offense tiptoe around its opponent, Mariota returned to lead the Tennessee Titans to a much-needed win over the Colts. The Titans look to build off that win and keep at least a share of the AFC South lead when they visit the winless Cleveland Browns for a Week 7 tilt.
The Titans really needed Mariota to play after watching the Cassel-led offense produce a total of 212 yards and 10 points in the last game-and-a-half. Mariota sat out the second-half of a loss to Houston after sustaining a hamstring injury and didn’t play the previous game against Miami. Cassel did little in his place putting his job as the backup in jeopardy. The Titans had three quarterbacks active for Monday’s contest, dressing Weeden just in case.
Mariota is as much of a threat with his legs as he is with his arm, but he was still hampered by the injury and rarely left the pocket. Still, with great protection up front, he threw for a season-high 306 yards and led the offense to a big second-half. It helps when the ground game pitches in and the Titans word down Indy with a punishing attack that produced 168 yards with a career-best 131 from Derrick Henry. This is how the Titans are supposed to look and they can’t do it without Mariota.
2017 Record: 3-3
2017 ATS Record: 3-3
2017 Over/Under Total Record: 3-3
Current Super Bowl Odds: +4000
Current Odds to Win AFC: +2500
Current Odds to Win AFC South: +175
Current NFL Odds: Check Back Later
Over/Under Total: Check Back Later
Week 6: Titans 36, Colts 22
ATS Result: Titans -7
Over/Under Total Result: Over 46.5
The Titans didn’t score their first touchdown until the fourth quarter when they broke the game open. Five Ryan Succop field goals kept them in it until DeMarco Murray hit paydirt early in the final frame. The Colts tied it before Mariota launched a scoring strike to Taywan Taylor. A 72-yard sprint by Henry supplied the final margin and made Titans’ backers happy as they covered the 7-point spread with that score.
Week 5: Dolphins 16, Titans 10
ATS Result: Dolphins PK
Over/Under Total Result: Under 41.5
The defense did all it could to get a win but Cassel and the offense didn’t get the memo. The Titans held Miami to 178 total yards, but a Cassel fumble on a sack, that everybody on the field except for one Miami player thought was a fumble, resulted in a touchdown. The offense struggled again under Cassel and managed just 188 yards making the under an easy winner.
Week 4: Texans 57, Titans 14
ATS Result: Texans +2.5
Over/Under Total Result: Over 43.5
It was a bad start for Mariota and things just snowballed out of control. A pick ended the first drive and the Titans were down 14-0 midway through the first quarter. Mariota tried to keep his team in the game, running for a pair of scores, but the offense couldn’t get going and the defense was hung out to dry defending 78 plays and nearly 40 minutes. Tennessee saw its streak of 30 point games end, but they still cashed the over for a third straight game.
Week 3: Titans 33, Seahawks 27
ATS Result: Titans -2
Over/Under Total Result: Over 42
Another impressive outing got the Titans a big victory and a cover for the second straight week. Tennessee owned the trenches and did what it does best – run the football. Mariota also chipped in and the Titans reached the 30-point mark and cashed the over for the second time in as many games.
Week 2: Titans 37, Jaguars at 16
ATS Result: Titans -1
Over/Under Total Result: Over 42
The Titans rolled to an easy cover win by scoring 30 straight points after falling behind 3-0. It wasn’t the start they wanted, but it ended being an impressive rout. Tennessee scored 17 points in the third quarter and 31 in the second half to cash the over. The running game was solid and the use of two backs was a factor with Henry rushing for a career-high after Murray tweaked his hamstring. The defense forced three turnovers and limited Jacksonville to 310 yards with nearly half that total coming on the Jags final two drives after the outcome had been decided.
Week 1: Raiders 26, Titans 16
ATS Result: Raiders +2.5
Over/Under Total Result: Under 49.5
As good as the Titans are at running the football they struggled to score in the red zone against the Raiders, twice settling for field goals after getting inside the 20-yard line. Those additional points would have allowed the teams to reach the total, but the Titans still came up short as 2.5-point favorite. They fell behind early after failing to recover an onside kick to open the game and never had the lead, though the game was tied twice in the first half.
Preseason Record: 1-3
ATS Record: 1-3
Over/Under Total Record: 1-3
Tennessee did everything but win the game when they met the Raiders last season. The Titans flexed their muscles in the trenches running for 181 yards and they kept Defensive Player of the Year Khalil Mack out of the backfield. They also shut down Oakland’s passing attack, holding Carr to just 249 yards in the air. But three costly turnovers and failure to produce in the red zone was their downfall in a 17-10 loss. After an uneventful preseason, the Titans need to turn it on against one of the AFC’s best teams.
Week 1: Titans vs. Raiders, Sunday, September 10, 1 p.m. ET – CBS
Week 2: Titans at Jaguars, Sunday, September 17, 1 p.m. ET – CBS
Week 3: Titans vs. Seahawks, Sunday, September 24, 4:05 p.m. ET – FOX
Week 4: Titans at Texans, Sunday, October 1, 1 p.m. ET – CBS
Week 5: Titans at Dolphins, Sunday, October 8, 1 p.m. ET – CBS
Week 6: Titans vs. Colts, Monday, October 16, 8:30 p.m. ET – ESPN
Week 7: Titans at Browns, Sunday, October 22, 1 p.m. ET – CBS
Week 8: Bye Week
Week 9: Titans vs. Ravens, Sunday, November 5, 1 p.m. ET – CBS
Week 10: Titans vs. Bengals, Sunday, November 12, 1 p.m. ET – FOX
Week 11: Titans at Steelers, Thursday, November 16, 8:25 p.m. ET – NBC
Week 12: Titans at Colts, Sunday, November 26, 1 p.m. ET – CBS
Week 13: Titans vs. Texans, Sunday, December 3, 1 p.m. ET – CBS
Week 14: Titans at Cardinals, Sunday, December 10, 4:05 p.m. ET – CBS
Week 15: Titans at 49ers, Sunday, December 17, 4:25 p.m. ET – CBS
Week 16: Titans vs. Rams, Sunday, December 24, 1 p.m. ET – FOX
Week 17: Titans vs. Jaguars, Sunday, December 31, 1 p.m. ET – CBS
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