The Tennessee Titans beat the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday, improving their record to 6-2 and increasing their lead in the AFC South to three games.
The game itself was a rollercoaster. The Titans quickly fell into a 14-0 hole, which they erased before halftime. Both teams traded blows in the second half, with the Titans ultimately getting the upper hand in overtime.
This is one of those games, though, where the significance of the events that led to the result pales in comparison to the significance of the result itself.
Vrabel on the victory against the Colts pic.twitter.com/w8d6UbU4zs
— Buck Reising (@BuckReising) October 31, 2021
Tennessee didn’t just take a three-game lead in the AFC South on Sunday⏤they practically won the division.
After their win over Indianapolis, the Titans have a 98% chance of ending the 2021 season atop the AFC South, according to the New York Times’ playoff predictor tool.
Statistically, that number is so high because the Titans’ win on Sunday completed a sweep of the Colts, giving them a tiebreaker in addition to their three-game lead over the Colts.
Essentially, the Titans have a 3.5 game lead in the division.
While the Colts proved against the Titans that they’re capable of going toe to toe with talented teams, they also proved that they’re just not good enough to have a realistic shot of closing their gap with the Titans before the end of the season.
QB Carson Wentz reverted to his reckless and erratic ways against the Titans, throwing two back-breaking interceptions late in the game.
He threw the first with his left hand from the end zone, and Titans CB Elijah Molden caught it for an easy touchdown.
The Colts also struggled defensively. They did a nice job of bottling up RB Derrick Henry, but it came at the expense of their pass defense, which struggled mightily against WR A.J. Brown.
With the Colts all but out of the running for the division, plus the fact that Jacksonville and Houston never even entered the running, the Titans can turn their attention to competing for a first-round bye.
Their win over Indianapolis was their fourth straight, and they currently have the best record in the AFC.
Head coach Mike Vrabel has his team on a tear, and there’s no reason to believe they can’t keep it up.
Cover image: George Walker IV/The Tennessean