Story of the Game: The Chris Johnson Show
Chris Johnson became the first player in franchise history to eclipse 100 yards in rushing and pass receptions. He ran for 132 yards on 26 carries and caught nine receptions for 100 yards.
Johnson repeatedly bailed out Vince Young and the Titans offense on checkdowns and screen passes. I’m happy to see offensive coordinator Mike Heimerdinger has discovered the screen pass, but I’m concerned that Tennessee might overwork CJ, as the franchise did to Earl Campbell many years ago.
With all due respect to Adrian Peterson, can we acknowledge that CJ is the best running back in the NFL?
The Other Story of the Game: D Line Excels
Tennessee’s defense sacked Trent Edwards twice and kept him on the run all day. The Titans defensive linemen recorded ten solo tackles.Much-maligned (by me) rookie Sen’Derrick Marks made one tackle and pushed the pocket effectively.
Second-year defensive end William Hayes had one sack and one tackle. It’s too bad the NFL decides to release the Pro Bowl ballot so early. Jevon Kearse is listed on the ballot along with Kyle Vanden Bosch, and Hayes is outplaying The Freak and KVB thus far.
Did the Titans miss Albert Haynesworth?
No (see above).
Vince Young rolls on
Young threw his first interception as a starter on a long pass intended for Lavelle Hawkins. Otherwise, he completed a nice deep pass to Kenny Britt, relied heavily on Chris Johnson, and ran for 29 yards on five carries. His lone touchdown pass was caught by Nate Washington.
I was impressed by VY’s composure and decision-making. There were a number of occasions, particularly on third down, when receivers were covered and he made the intelligent choice to throw away the football.
Keith Bulluck recorded 11 tackles. I’m happy to see Bulluck, a team leader who never gave up on his team during the losing streak, playing hard in games his team is winning.
I’m still waiting for Jared Cook‘s breakout game. The rookie tight end caught one pass for four yards.
Rob Bironas made two of three field goals. He missed a 60-yard attempt right before the half but connected on a 51-yard attempt in the fourth quarter.
Next Week: Houston Texans
Some will say the Titans have not won a game against a solid team during its three-game winning streak. Tennessee has a chance to avenge their week two loss and prove they will be a force down the stretch with a strong effort in Houston. The Texans are coming off a bye week, so a victory will not come easy.