Kyle Vanden Bosch was right. The Tennessee Titans were going to lose this season.
Although no one thought this badly. Mike Heimerdinger decided to throw the ball constantly. Tennessee ran the ball a grand total of 11 times. I thought running was Tennessee's game.
Don't get me wrong. Kerry Collins didn't perform badly, but when he throws constantly, it's difficult to get possession. Time of possession was the downfall of Tennessee. They had the ball for 19 minutes and 30 seconds, not even a third of the total game time.
But come on, RUN THE FOOTBALL! That was what you were supposed to do. The Jets weren't shutting you down like Chicago did. Chris Johnson, on his spectacular 10 carries, had 46 yards. LenDale White had one, that's ONE carry, in which he lost a yard. Leon Washington and Tony Richardson, the 2-3 combo for the Jets, combined for 10 carries, one fewer than the Titans 1-2. Add Thomas Jones and his 27 carries, and the Jets out-rushed Tennessee severely.
The Titans defense didn't perform badly. They allowed so many points because they were worn out from the three and outs from the offense.
Tennessee lost this football game because they were outcoached. Defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz played Chris Carr, a cornerback for Tennessee. Chris Carr couldn't even start or play for the Oakland Raiders! Carr is a kick and punt returner, not a defensive back who should play significant time. I realize Nick Harper was inactive, but how about giving Reynaldo Hill a shot? Maybe even Vincent Fuller? NOT Carr. Tyrone Poole, whoever that is, even recorded a tackle.
Even more confusing? Carr played Laveranues Coles, and gave Cortland Finnegan Jerricho Cotchery. Coles is obviously the number one, and Cotchery is obviously the number two. Ultimately, both had good days, but Coles had seven receptions for 88 yards and a touchdown. Cotchery caught six passes for 55 yards, but Finnegan didn't allow him anything better than a 16-yard catch.
Carr had two pass interference calls on one series, the last of the Jets. Coles had beaten him on both. Carr played a bad game.
The offense didn't fare any better with their pass-o-plenty strategy. Collins struggled to complete 50 percent of his passes, and it took him the last series to get above the mark. He hooked up with Bo Scaife just three times, Brandon Jones four times, and even former Jet Justin McCariens four times. McCariens, shockingly, had the best day, with 43 yards. Jones and Scaife each had 40 a piece. Justin Gage had one long pass for 37 yards. Quinton Ganther got three dump-off passes for 40 yards in the final series. Johnson had three catches for 15 yards. Lavelle Hawkins, Alge Crumpler, and Ahmard Hall each caught one pass, with Hall taking one in for a score.
Collins and Johnson each fumbled, with Johnson losing his to Bryan Thomas of the Jets. Other than this, Tennessee had no turnovers. They also had their most penalized game in recent memory, eight times for 60 yards.
On defense, Albert Haynesworth still looked strong, recording four tackles and 1.5 sacks, his most in one game since Week 4 against the Minnesota Vikings. Vanden Bosch also returned to the game for full action, and had six tackles and .5 of a sack with Haynesworth. He engaged in several gang tackles, only having two to himself. Still, Vanden Bosch had a very strong day.
Tony Brown, Haynesworth's partner in crime, lead the defensive line in tackles with eight, good for third overall. This was a season high for Brown, as well as one of the best games of his career. Jevon Kearse, the fourth man on the line, had four tackles.
Keith Bulluck and Stephen Tulloch did most of the tackling for the Titans, since both linebackers had 10 tackles a piece. David Thornton also had seven from the other outside linebacker spot. The three of them were responsible for most of the defense, as they had 30 percent of the tackles. Tulloch was impressive. He probably had the starting job at middle linebacker locked up over Ryan Fowler, considering Fowler failed to make one hit.
In the secondary, Chris Hope had eight tackles. Finnegan had five, as well as an interception of Brett Favre. Michael Griffin had seven tackles. Carr had six. The four had a disappointing afternoon, although they combined for 26 tackles.
The top man off the bench for the Titans was Kevin Vickerson, a backup for the Titans defensive line. He had five tackles as well as a fumble recovery.
Stat of the Game
One. That is the number of punts the Jets had. One.
Jets: Brett Favre, QB
Titans: Keith Bulluck, OLB
Jets: Leon Washington, HB
Titans: Kerry Collins, QB
Jets: Abram Elam, S
Titans: Albert Haynesworth, DT