Today’s win against the Indianapolis Colts was…sloppy for the Tennessee Titans.
Frustrating playcalls and a lack of consistency on both sides of the ball, the inability to fully take advantage of the opportunities that were laid on a silver platter, there was just too many mistakes made today for a football team that wants to be considered among the top teams in the AFC.
But winning in the NFL is hard enough as it is.
You’re going up against the best players the game has to offer, you’re dealing with a rash of injuries both offensively and defensively, and to top it all off you’re being forced to dig deep and come up with some success against a division opponent that loves to play the same physical brand of football as you.
When you combine all of those factors, maybe some of those mistakes that were made don’t seem so significant after all.
“We’ll take a win no matter what.” Ryan Tannehill said.
However, while players will take wins no matter the way they got them, the mistakes made during those sloppy wins like today’s tend to stand out more than I’m sure players would like.
Through three games, the Titans’ offense has turned the football over seven times. That’s just five turnovers less than their total for the entire 2020 season. Not only that, the turnovers have come in bunches in two of the team’s three games this season with three committed in both week one and week three. Now this offense wasn’t going to stay below the 15 total turnover threshold in back to back seasons, there’s just too many variables present that would’ve made that nearly impossible.
But to quickly approach your 2020 turnover total in just three games? I think that’s something worth sounding the minature red alarm for.
Turnovers are crucial, whether you force them or commit them. They can turn momentum on its head and even change the landscape of a specific game for good. I’m sure you readers know this, but just for the sake of flow, I’ll explain it all again. When you’re talking about game landscapes changing, you’re likely talking about the difference between a win and a loss.
For the Titans, committing three turnovers like they did today usually would have resulted in a crushing, back breaking loss that would’ve left us with more questions than answers. However, they found a way to win and increase their early lead in the AFC South.
“It’s tough to win when you have three turnovers.” Derrick Henry explained.
Even with this win though, there has to be some extra emphasis on limiting the turnovers moving forward. It’s easy to say that when that sentiment is expressed league wide almost every day throughout the week during the season. But when you have such a tough first half schedule like the Titans do, you’re going to want to address the issue as soon as possible so it doesn’t turn into a long term problem.
The Titans play two underwhelming teams in the New York Jets and the Jacksonville Jaguars over the next two weeks. After those two winnable games though? A stretch that includes extremely important games against the Buffalo Bills, Kansas City Chiefs, Los Angeles Rams, and the New Orleans Saints.
At least three of those teams currently possess offenses that will make you pay if you turn the football over. Which means if you fall behind in the turnover battle, you could find yourself playing catch on the scoreboard in an attempt to keep a skid from suddenly starting.
I know the AFC South isn’t the best overall competition, but if the Titans want to keep pace with the rest of the AFC in terms of potential seeding down the line — and that’s if this team can grind their way through their grueling upcoming stretch — then the turnover issue has to be eliminated quickly.
Luckily for the Titans, they have time to work through the problem and fix it.
If turnovers continue to be a thorn in the Titans’ side however, it’d be wise to bring out the good ole oopsie sign and pray to the heavens that the problem doesn’t come back to bite the team where it hurts.
“We have to take care of the football.” Mike Vrabel said.