Though it wasn’t the cleanest victory ever, the Titans came out on top Monday night vs the Denver Broncos with Derrick Henry leading the way and Gostkowski struggling early on.
The Titans have started the season off right, earning their first W on the road at Broncos stadium. I wont say that this was the prettiest victory I’ve ever seen, but a win is a win and the Titans look to be poised to continue the momentum they had over the back half of last years’ season.
Derrick Henry was the focal point of the Titans offense Monday night, carrying the ball 31 times for 116 yards while also earning 15 receiving yards on 3 catches. No one should be surprised to see Henry getting a lot of work, but I think it’s safe to say we wont see him handling 42% of the teams’ offensive plays moving forward. That is not if the team plans to keep him healthy all season. With the shortened offseason and not a lot of time to get game ready, it is a great sign to see that Henry has maintained his form and looks to be ready to maintain the bell cow roll for the team moving forward.
Overall the passing game looked decent with Tannehill spreading the ball around and scoring a 67% completion rate, and Corey Davis being the standout earning 101 yards on 7 catches. Both touchdowns in the game were caught by the tight ends, one each to Smith and Pruitt. I expect Tannehill to continue to be consistent in the passing game and hope to see his completion percentage creep a little higher as the season goes on.
On the whole it wasn’t a good day for Gostkowski, who missed three field goals and one extra point before putting the game winning field goal through the uprights. The lack of preseason games and prep time has shown throughout the league with some substandard play, and this is one of those cases, I believe, where Gostkowski was knocking off a bit of rust and should be fine moving forward. Especially if he continues to remove his socks before he kicks field goals — which seems to be his good luck charm.
On the defensive side of the ball things looked good for the most part with Jadeveon Clowney disrupting the Broncos offense all night even though he wasn’t able to get in for a sack, and Jeffery Simmons leading the way for the big men on the line. A rather disappointing move was during the first quarter when Rashaan Evans threw a punch at Broncos’ TE Jake Butt after the whistle was blown on a play, which earned him an immediate ejection. If the team continues to maintain a tough line on defense, and the senseless penalties can be avoided, the Titans will be a solid opponent all season.
The Titans will host the Jacksonville Jaguars next Sunday hoping to earn their second W. The Jaguars looked good against Indy winning 27-20, but if the Titans are able to maintain pressure on Minshew and contain rookie RB James Robinson, they should be able to come out on top.