Legendary head coach Bill Parcells once coined the phrase…”You are who your record says you are”. But in the case of the 7-6 Tennessee Titans, it seems that people are slow to embrace that theory.
With just one nationally televised game against the lowly Jacksonville Jaguars, it’s hard to fault casual fans for overlooking them, but the Titans are good team…and their record is no fluke.
Tennessee has been one of the hottest teams in the league over the last two months, winning six of their last nine games.
They are also beating quality opponents along the way.
Four of Tennessee’s seven wins were against teams with winning records (Detroit 9-4, Denver 8-5, Miami 8-5, Green Bay 7-6).
The Titans outscored them 106-67, and beat them in a variety of ways.
In Detroit the defense held quarterback Matthew Stafford to one of his worst performances of the season, sacking him four times while sealing the victory with a game-ending interception.
Marcus Mariota engineered two scoring drives in the fourth quarter, taking the lead for good with a fourth down touchdown strike to Andre Johnson in the closing minutes.
In Miami the offense returned the favor, racking up 235 yards on the ground in route to a convincing 30-17 victory over the Dolphins. Mariota passed for three tds and ran for another that afternoon.
Green Bay ran into a buzz saw when they visited Nissan Stadium last month. The Titans jumped out to a 21-0 lead and were never threatened in a 47-25 route of the Packers. Tennessee’s offense put on a show, amassing over 400 yards and scoring six touchdowns.
Last Sunday the offense had their worst day of the year, but the defense had their best…without one of their best players in Pro Bowl defensive lineman Jurrell Casey.
Tennessee survived a 13-10 slugfest with the defending World Champion Denver Broncos.
Shootout? Check. Grind it out defensive battle? Check. Dominating the line of scrimmage with the run game? Check. Aerial assault? Check.
The Titans have proven they can win in a variety of ways.
The league’s third-best offensive line. The third-best rushing attack. November’s AFC Offensive Player of the Month under center.
The league’s second leading rusher. The number one touchdown scoring tight end.
The only defense in the league that has two players with at least nine sacks (Brian Orakpo 10, Derrick Morgan 9).
The number one red zone offense in the league. One of three teams in the NFL with zero turnovers in the red zone.
Translation…yes…the Titans are as good as their winning record says they are.