Sunday’s 33-16 loss to the New England Patriots didn’t give us any new information about the Tennessee Titans.
The now 3-11 Titans never really threatened the Patriots, and the result was never in doubt.
Through 14 weeks of the season, this team is exactly who we thought they were. Marcus Mariota and Delanie Walker continue to be most consistent players on the team.
As for everywhere else on the roster? You never know what you’re gonna get.
The offensive line is atrocious. The offensive playcalling is unimaginative. The defense is wildly inconsistent, as are the special teams.
You aren’t winning games with that combination. The Patriots didn’t become the second team in NFL history to win 12 or more games in six straight seasons with a combination like that.
But let’s not even begin to compare the Titans franchise to the Patriots franchise. To say that there are night and day differences would be an understatement.
This late in the season, there’s only so much progress that can be made. Especially when you’re a team that will have a new head coach, a lot of new pieces on the roster, and maybe even a new general manager.
So the only thing you can really do is take your hits and start preparing for a new era.
Speculation will continue to grow throughout the remainder of the season as to who the new coach will be. And there will be plenty of speculation surrounding whether or not current Titans ownership is looking to sell the franchise.
Which brings us to another interesting dilemma that the Titans face for the rest of the season: the health of Mariota.
The rookie quarterback left the game against the Patriots with a knee injury and didn’t return. The Patriots didn’t do anything to injure him. It was more of a case of his own offensive line once again making him a sitting duck in the pocket.
If Mariota is not 100-percent healthy, he shouldn’t step on the field for the rest of the season.
The Titans finish the year with games against Houston and Indianapolis. Neither game means anything. It would be beyond stupid to risk getting Mariota injured yet again.
The biggest weakness for this Titans team is the offensive line. The biggest strength is Mariota. Putting him out there to take a beating in meaningless games makes zero sense.
It simply does not matter what the Titans do in the final two games. They could both 42-0 or lose both 42-0 nothing. So what?
The Titans aren’t getting to the playoffs either way, and they aren’t fixing the biggest problems with this franchise with two meaningless wins.
And two wins aren’t saving Mike Mularkey’s job. He won’t be the next permanent head coach, so no reason to even speculate about that.
So Titan fans can watch these last two weeks of the season with this in mind: the team won’t look nothing like this come next September.
Give Mariota some snaps here and there if he’s at full strength. If not, let him rest. Or maybe even let him hop a flight to Hawaii and enjoy some quality beach time.
Two more weeks. That’s all that is left of this miserable era of pro football futility in Nashville.
Or at least it better be if this franchise wants to have any fans in the stadium next season.