Titans Colts

The Tennessee Titans had a combined record of 5-27 the last two seasons. This year, they sit at 5-6 after another gut-wrenching loss to the Colts.

The fan base is mad about the eleventh consecutive loss to the Colts. This is a good thing. Over the last several years, the Titans have been so bad, by the time Thanksgiving rolled around, fans had moved on emotionally. This team has fans hanging on every game, every drive because they’ve shown the ability to blow out NFL teams.

The Titans are a tease

They keep stringing fans along like the popular girl in school who will chat and be friendly with the nerdy kid in private, but turns around and embarrasses him around his peers. You’ve seen that movie. Tennessee keeps giving its fans hope that they’ll turn this season into a playoff season. But, it never happens.

So many times, this year, Mike Mularkey’s team has had the opportunity to make a strong statement to the NFL showing they’ve arrived as a legitimate playoff contender. Every time, they’ve failed.

Titans lose to Colts
Marcus Mariota was sacked a season high 5 times against the Colts (Colts.com).

The ways they’ve failed have been all across the board. Against Minnesota, Indianapolis (the first time) and San Diego devastating turnovers gave the game away. At home against Oakland, a comeback opportunity was ruined by a bone-headed personal foul penalty by Taylor Lewan and a petty offensive pass interference call against Andre Johnson.

Then you have Sunday, a rematch against the division rival Colts. The fifth opportunity this team has to get over .500 and to become a real threat in the AFC South. Just like before the previous losses mentioned, the Titans were coming off an impressive win where Marcus Mariota and the defense played at a winning level. Somehow, the Titans come out completely flat and get down 21-0, on the road against Andrew Luck. The defense couldn’t stop anything, the offense couldn’t get a first down and everything was working for the Colts.

Credit to the Titans for fighting back. That’s another teasing aspect about this team to fans. Previous Titans teams, under a different head coach, would have folded. This team has fight. A holding call brought back a Mariota run that would’ve had the Titans setting up for a game-tying TD. Instead, DeMarco Murray was stuffed on a fourth-and-1 run. Ball game.

All fans wanted is a competitive team playing meaningful games in November and December. They have it. The fact is, this rebuild is ahead of schedule. The players love playing for Mularkey, and the roster Jon Robinson put together in one quick offseason is the most talented the franchise has had in years. And, the QB is the real deal.

The Titans five wins have come in impressive fashion, winning by an average of over 10 points. Five of the six losses have been by one touchdown and have come down to the final drive.

This franchise is on the verge of being a legitimate contender in the NFL for the next five years. Maybe, just not this year.