The Titans are a resilient team, it’s hard to argue that. They play with passion, and have a crew of misfits that can step up and make a big play…just not at the same time. They find ways to get points on the board…just not enough. They even find ways to score when throwing the ball…just it’s for their opponents.
Watching the Titans is like watching a child with ADD on an Easter egg hunt, just when you think they’re going to get it they head in the opposite direction. Last week’s 51-20 ha-whooping of the Titans exposed the many flaws that Munchak tries to hide every Sunday from his opponents, and the fans. Poor route running, an unbalanced attack, stagnant run blocking, and a perforated pass defense just sums up the many problems for Tennessee.
Again, they certainly try to do something every week for the loyal fan base that is surely straining their backs being on the edge of their seats for 15 years. The return of the energetic sophomore Jake Locker under center should be a boost for week 10, but the only real difference on paper between Locker and veteran Matt Hasselbeck is 15 rushing yards and one more interception.
The Titans face yet another resilient team in the Miami Dolphins this week. Miami has a fan base that has been aching for a legitimate starter at quarterback for what seems like forever. Ryan Tannehill, whom I am sure was up watching his alma mater Aggies upset the tide last night, has been a bright spot on an even spottier season for the Dolphins. With a prosaic receiving core, Tannehill has started to shine as he finds his niche in Philbin’s Fins. Unlike the Titans, the Fins are a balanced team on both sides of the ball. What they lack in talent (which isn’t much), they make up for by trying to play “mistake-free football” albeit a lofty goal. Though allowing close to 300 yards passing per game, they have only allowed 10 touchdowns in the air and ganked 8 picks, with a bend-but-don’t-break style defense.
The Dolphins have many offensive weapons, in some slower-moving easy-to-hit targets such as tight end Fasano and Clay, to some seriously speedy deep threats such as Brian Hartline and Davone Bess. Reggie Bush is starting to look like he has humbly found his place in the A-Gap that he has been assigned to run into and still possesses some wriggle in the open field. The most important thing though is that Miami has a very young, and very strong offensive line. If Tannehill can get some prime time receivers, then he will definitely have a bright future in Miami.
No big surprises just yet this season. The Dolphins should be able to corral Chris Johnson for most of the game (though he may rip a sprint off late in the game), and keep their hands high for the ambitious passes over the middle that Locker will surely flick. Bush should have a big day, as the Dolphins should bust off big runs mixing in their draws and delays with the short-short-long pass sequences and play-action that they have developed. Dolphins win 34-17 and move to 5-4 as they look to gain some momentum into the snowy months.