- The Titans let one slip away against the Chiefs last night.
- Malik Willis made his second career start for the Titans in place of an injured Ryan Tannehill.
- The Titans return to action on Sunday against the Broncos at Nissan Stadium.
At Arrowhead Stadium, the underdog Titans led for a significant portion of the game.
However, Kansas City recovered to win 20-17 in overtime, snapping Tennessee’s five-game winning run.
Titans head coach Mike Vrabel stated, “It’s very frustrating.” “I feel horrible for the athletes who compete, who put so much effort into this, and who play through pain, suffering, and any scenario. I am fortunate to be their coach because they fight.
“There are no moral wins, I want to be clear about that. We came over here to win, and nothing else entered our minds.”
Patrick Mahomes’ 14-yard touchdown run and two-point conversion run with 2:58 remaining in the fourth quarter gave the Chiefs a 17-17 tie with the Titans. Previously, the Titans led 17-9.
With 4:04 remaining in overtime, Harrison Butker’s 28-yard field goal gave the Chiefs a 20-17 lead.
In overtime, the Titans had possession of the ball, but they were unable to advance the ball.
“We are simply happy of our performance,” said Titans safety Kevin Byard “I don’t know how many defensive plays we ran, but it was probably around 100 or so. We surrendered a great deal of yards, but we fought our asses off. We kept us in the game against an explosive offense for the majority of the contest.
“When I stepped to the sideline after they hit the field goal, I told them, ‘Hey,… I can’t ask for anything more. Everybody was out there fighting. Guys were hurt and giving everything they had, and that’s all I can ask for at the end of the day.
Malik Willis started for the Titans in place of the injured Ryan Tannehill for the second time in his career.
Willis completed 5 of 16 passes for 80 yards in the game, and he also rushed eight times for 40 yards. Willis seen receivers drop catchable long passes during a game in which he was sacked three times.
On 17 carries, running back Derrick Henry accumulated 115 yards and two touchdowns for a final total of 115 yards and two touchdowns.
The setback reduced the Titans to 5-3 on a night when Mahomes completed 43-of-68 passes for 465 yards and a score on 43 attempts. Roger McCreary, a cornerback for the Titans, intercepted Mahomes during the game.
Willis stated, “I am most proud of the men for the method in which they fought.” We didn’t give up regardless of the circumstances, and I am incredibly proud of the team. We didn’t win this time, but it’s something we can learn from.
On defense, the Titans were a resilient group.
After Kansas City put together a lengthy drive to start the game, the defense responded by limiting the Chiefs to a 24-yard field goal by Harrison Butker following an eight-minute, 15-play, 69-yard drive.
The Titans’ first offensive play was a spectacular pass from Willis to rookie tight end Chig Okonkwo for 48 yards. However, the Titans’ drive stalled, and they were forced to punt.
On the next series, Mahomes connected with Mecole Hardman for a touchdown pass of seven yards, making the score 9-0. McCreary’s missed tackle on Hardman allowed him to score, despite the Titans appearing to be on the approach of making another stop.
Henry’s four-yard touchdown run concluded the Titans’ seven-play, 74-yard drive. Willis completed a 16-yard pass to tight end Austin Hooper in the drive, and he ran twice for 25 yards on the possession. Henry’s 24-yard run placed the Titans into the red zone.
When the Titans regained possession, they scored again, this time on a 1-yard touchdown run by Henry. The 79-yard, five-play drive gave the Titans the lead, 14-9. Henry ran for 56 yards on the drive, breaking Earl Campbell’s team record for rushing touchdowns with his 74th career touchdown run.
Randy Bullock kicked a 44-yard field goal early in the second half to increase the Titans’ advantage to 17-9. The field goal was made possible by an interception by McCreary, who caught the Mahomes ball after Kelce dropped it.
With 5:17 remaining in the third quarter, the score remained 17-9 as the Titans continued to play a bend-but-don’t-break defense after stopping a Kansas City drive and allowing Butker’s 47-yard field goal attempt to sail wide.
For the longest time, it appeared as though the Titans could pull off an upset.
Then followed a dismal conclusion.
Sunday, the Titans return to action at Nissan Stadium against the Broncos.
Jeffery Simmons, a defensive lineman with the Titans, stated, “This one is certainly difficult.” “We will face them again in the playoffs. One play might have changed the outcome of this game, especially in overtime. Our thinking is, ‘How can we make that one play?’ However, I am pleased of my team – we fought till the finish.”