This was an entertaining but turnover-ridden game. Questionable decisions by the Titans coaching staff almost snatched defeat from the jaws of victory, but Tennessee’s defense forced enough mistakes to keep Miami from staging a comeback in a game the Titans were dominating in the first half.
Story of the game: Records, schmecords
Tennessee led 24-6 with 8:58 left in the third quarter, and it appeared that Heimerdinger’s priority was to force-feed the ball to record-chasing running back Chris Johnson.
Vince Young threw three touchdown passes for the first time in his career — two in the first half– and could have had a career day if offensive coordinator Mike Heimerdinger hadn’t taken the ball out of his hands.
Johnson carried the ball on first down on four of the Titans’ final six possessions. He gained a total of three yards.
The Dolphins defense held Johnson to 30 yards rushing on 14 carries in the second half and forced CJ to fumble in the third quarter. Johnson finished with 104 yards rushing. Thankfully, Johnson’s fumble and lack of production in the second half didn’t cost the Titans in the end.
The Other Story of the Game: Redemption
Vince Young continues to show maturity and poise in the pocket. His first pass of the day was intercepted, but he bounced back to throw the aforementioned three touchdowns.
In the second quarter, Jason Taylor forced a VY fumble which was recovered by right tackle David Stewart. On the next play, Young threw a 32-yard touchdown pass to Nate Washington.
Free safety Michael Griffin redeemed himself after he bobbled a sure interception. The pass was caught by hustling rookie receiver Brian Hartline for 57 yards. Miami went on to score a touchdown and a two-point conversion. But Griffin, who had not caught an interception all season, caught a pass by Miami quarterback Chad Henne to set up Rob Bironas’ game-winning field goal in overtime.
Titans are .500
For the first time this season, Tennessee is .500 (7-7) and still has a remote chance of making the playoffs. What if, what if…
I find it highly ironic that Vince Young may have saved both his career in Tennessee and Jeff Fisher’s job, when I was certain that one of the two men would not be a Titan in 2010. Fisher was showing VY much love on the sideline after the quarterback’s first half performance.
The Titans play the tough San Diego Chargers on Christmas Day. The Titans defense must play better than they did against the Dolphins and VY must continue playing at a high level to pull the upset.
Go Titans, and Happy Holidays!