Sports, Thrill of Victory

Titans going in the wrong direction after yet another loss

The Tennessee Titans are the worst team in the worst division in the NFL.

That’s not an opinion. That’s simply stating the facts.

Ken Whisenhunt’s team dropped yet another game in disappointing fashion in a 10-7 loss to the Atlanta Falcons at Nissan Stadium, moving Whisenhunt to 3-19 overall as head coach of the Titans.

His record in his last 34 games as a head coach? 4-30.

The Titans defense was a lone bright spot in the 10-7 loss to the Falcons. PHOTO BY DONN JONES, COURTESY TENNESSEE TITANS

The Titans defense was a lone bright spot in the 10-7 loss to the Falcons. PHOTO BY MATTHEW MAXEY

Sunday’s dreary weather seemed appropriate for a game that lacked excitement for start to finish. Give both defenses credit for playing well, but overall, this felt like a game between two unmotivated teams.

Perhaps that made sense for the Falcons. They came into the game with an impressive 5-1 record. They also came into the game knowing that they were playing a team in shambles.

But for the Titans, another lackluster performance doesn’t make sense. After getting embarrassed by the Miami Dolphins a week ago, Tennessee simply needed to play better. The defense did, the offense didn’t.

That’s been the problem throughout the Whisenhunt era. The Titans have never been able to put a complete game together. Actually, they’ve done it twice. Week 1 in 2014 and Week 1 in 2015.

The issue is that NFL seasons last longer than a week. The lack of consistency by this team under Whisenhunt’s leadership is why the Titans are where they are.

It wasn’t as if Atlanta came out and played its best football. The Falcons tried on numerous occasions to give the Titans the game.

However, every time Tennessee had a chance, things went awry.

Look no further than the last possession of the game for the Titans. After Atlanta missed a field goal, all Tennessee needed was a field goal of their own to tie the game.

Less than a minute later, Zach Mettenberger threw his second interception of the day, and the game was over.

Fans clamoring for Mettenberger to start over Marcus Mariota no longer had a valid argument. Mettenberger certainly didn’t have his best day under center, and we’ll always wonder if things would have played out different had Mariota not been on the sidelines.

Zach Mettenberger had a rough outing in replacing the injured Marcus Mariota. PHOTO BY MATTHEW MAXEY

Zach Mettenberger had a rough outing in replacing the injured Marcus Mariota. PHOTO BY MATTHEW MAXEY

But the Titans’ issues go way beyond a bad performance by Mettenberger.

“We’re getting close” only works so long. “We’re making progress” doesn’t mean much when you’ve lost five straight games and nine straight home games dating back to last season.

Titans fans have no reason to believe that this team is getting close or making progress. The team’s record says otherwise.

To make progress in the NFL, you must win. Everyone knew that the Titans were rebuilding a season ago. But we’re nearly halfway through a new season, and the franchise is spinning its wheels.

In this type of situation, everyone is accountable. Placing total blame on the players or coaches isn’t accurate. Ultimately though, it starts at the top.

The Titans find themselves at the bottom of the AFC South, a division with a 3-4 team – the Indianapolis Colts – leading the way.

Tennessee finished last in the division a year ago and went on to claim the second overall pick in the NFL draft.

At this rate, the Titans will make progress in one area: they’ll move from the second overall pick to the first overall pick in the draft.

That’s not exactly the type of progress Titans fans were hoping for.

 

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