With Titans, Dean Pees sacrificing a Wednesday Ravens' routine

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – For a long time,Dean Pees’ Wednesday morning ritual with the Ravens was the same.

Before he presented the game plan to the Ravens’ entire defense, he ran through it with a small group of key players. Ray Lewis, Terrell Suggs, Haloti Ngata and Ed Reed had a chance to react to it and Pees might tinker based on their feedback.Pees2

Initially, the defensive coordinator planned to do the same thing with the Titans.

And so, in the early weeks of the season, I asked several players including Wesley Woodyard, Kevin Byard and Logan Ryan if they were part of such a meetings.

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Marcus Mariota's performance against the Jaguars was better than I thought

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Marcus Mariota’s performance off the bench in Jacksonville was better on a second viewing.

He dropped back to pass 18 times and hit on 12 for 100 yards. Nothing giant there.IMG 5158

But each of his first three series ended because of a third-down drop: Rishard Matthews, then Tajae Sharpe, then Corey Davis. Mariota also threw one away out of trouble. So five of the six incomplete passes were not accuracy issues.

His delivery was mostly on time and while the lingering elbow/hand/fingers/grip issues mean he couldn’t make certain throws, he was good with the ones he could make. The 17-yard pass interference call against A.J. Bouye was on a ball the gang in the press box calculated traveled 34 yards in the air.

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Beddingfield: Titans got a break when Jaguars didn't adjust at all to Marcus Mariota

Blake Beddingfield was a Titans' scout for 19 years, through the 2017 draft. He was the team's director of college scouting for his final six years. He writes weekly previews and reviews of Titans' games for PaulKuharsky.com and he's brough to you by Party Fowl.


By BLAKE BEDDINGFIELD, special contributor

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The Titans won because of a circumstance that was out of their control and that was Marcus Mariota coming in the game in relief of a concussed Blaine Gabbert.


The Jaguars looked surprised to see Mariota enter the game and then acted as if they had never seen him play before, never adjusting to Mariota’s ability to run the ball.

He was very effective passing the ball, getting the ball out of his hands quickly. The Jaguars continued to play off coverage when Titans were in third-and-short. They allowed the easy throws to convert.

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Corey Davis displaying a nastier attitude for Titans

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- After he and two other top Titans wide receivers greeted Marcus Mariota with drops, Corey Davis recovered to make the offensive play of the day.

IMG 5088

It helped set up a field goal to put the Titans ahead 6-3 in a game they won 9-

On a first-and-20 early in the third quarter, Davis lined up on the far right of a tight formation. Mariota appeared to look over the middle first, then came to Davis. He’s run to the outside and then cut sharply back, making the catch on the outside edge of the numbers, in front of A.J. Bouye but just 4 yards beyond the line of scrimmage.

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A dog? A wolf? Marcus Mariota was a QB who brought the Titans a needed spark and got them to 2-1

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Corey Davis called him a dog.

Taylor Lewan said Marcus Mariota’s game engineering at TIAA Bank Stadium amounted to “a wolf being a wolf.”Image 1 5

Attempts to elicit further animal comparisons were unsuccessful, through after the Titans 9-6 win over the Jaguars tight end Jonnu Smith did latch on to one of the two presented to him for his quarterback.

“Dog? Wolf? I’ll probably have to go with dog,” he said. “When I think dog, I think, by any means. Just got grit. I want like a pit bull, you know what I am saying? You give something to a pit bull and he locks on to it and ain’t letting it go. That’s who he reminds me off.”

The Titans pit bull came off the bench with 6:29 on the clock in the first quarter, after Malik Jackson was flagged for ear-holing Blaine Gabber, lowering the head to initiate contact and leaving Gabbert concussed.

And he did enough.

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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- WIth Mike Vrabel and then Matt LaFleur, the Titans are supposed to finally make a jump into the modern NFL and show us some of that offense that's popped up in Los Angeles and Kansas City and New Orleans and Pittsburgh.IMG 5053

Not yet, though.

Just about every time I've gotten excited about a good Titans' team being on the verge of becoming an offensive team, it's the defense that's been the more notable unit.

I still think it'll wind up being different this time. But right now, the Titans are clearly a defensive team. 

My video report from the field:

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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Taylor Lewan and Jalen Ramsey are both known to like to chat.

During the Titans' 9-6 win at TIAA Bank Fiel,d they had one extended conversation after a field goal that was surely not the only time they got to see up close how the other operates.

Lewan came away unimpressed and said he saw at least one moment when Ramsey was a liability for his team and others when the cornerback was clearly tired.


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Malcolm Butler: Fans and I are feeling the same about my play so far

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Malcolm Butler isn’t pretending things haven’t been OK so far.

Understandably, expectations are very high for a free-agent who came to Tennessee on a five-yard, $61 million deal with $30 million guaranteed.Butler

And we’ve seen him give up a 75-yard TD catch to Miami’s Kenny Stills and a 39-yard scoring catch to Will Fuller.

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