The Tennessee Titans’ woes at home continued today when their last second comeback effort fell short against the Oakland Raiders.
The Titans nearly overcame a double digit second half deficit for the second week in a row, but the Raiders held on for a gritty 17-10 victory.
The loss is yet another in a long string of disappointing outcomes at Nissan Stadium.
Tennessee is now 2-16 at home since 2014, and the two victories were nail-biters over the lowly Jacksonville Jaguars.
In fairness…the Titans haven’t won many road games the last two years either, but they played well enough at home during that stretch to have won at least half of those games.
Nine of their sixteen losses were by seven points or less.
And while jinxed is too strong of a word, it’s hard to overlook the fact that the Titans catch few, if any breaks at home. The final minute of today’s game is resounding proof.
Down by seven with less than two minutes to play, quarterback Marcus Mariota conjured up images of last week by leading the Titans down the field for the tying / go ahead score.
Then, inexplicably, Tennessee was reminded that they were playing at home.
Tajae Sharpe caught a pass on the final drive to get the Titans inside Oakland’s five yard line, then Taylor Lewan was flagged for a 15 yard unnecessary roughness penalty when he lunged toward the pile of Raider defenders that were jostling with the rookie receiver.
In Lewan’s defense, the officials should have immediately called the play dead when Sharpe’s forward progress was stopped.
No break there.
The penalty wasn’t fatal, however, and Mariota bounced back with a touchdown strike to Andre Johnson. But the play was negated by a questionable offensive pass interference call on Johnson.
No break there, either.
On the final offensive play of the game, Mariota found Harry Douglas in the end zone in what looked to be obvious defensive pass interference.
The ref swallowed his whistle, and the Titans swallowed a tough pill.
Three instances in less than a minute where the home team didn’t receive the customary home cooking.
Don’t get me wrong, the Titans have themselves (or Mariota) to blame with three costly turnovers. But if one of those calls go their way then the tone and title of this article could be totally different.
The comeback kids do it again has a nice ring to it…but I digress.
The loss drops Tennessee to 1-2, but they won’t have time to lick their wounds or feel sorry for themselves with the rested Houston Texans up this week.
At least this game is on the road.