Titans' disjointed 2-minute work against Cardinals story of joint practice

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Disjointed work by the Titans’ offense in 2-minute drill work against the Cardinals was the main viewing development of the joint practice session on Wednesday.

Charged with moving to a touchdown with 1:20 on the clock, the first- and second-team offenses struggled to string anything together. It was a relative wash as Arizona's offense struggled against the Titans in the same situation.

Ryan Tannehill

Ryan Tannehill dealt with penalties, a lack of separation, a lot of pressure and a bit of receiver confusion (notably from Kyle Philips and Dez Fitzpatrick).

“In that 2-minute, we just weren’t playing at a high level, what we expect offensively,” Tannehill said. “Just too inconsistent from today, we have to learn from it, clean it up…

“Aggressive coordinator, aggressive defense and they threw a bunch of different looks at us. We knew we were going to get a bunch of crazy different looks, didn’t know what they were going to be. They ended up being things that you don’t see too often in the NFL.”

It’s good experience for the Titans he said, for when they will see and prepare for teams that move people around as much as the Cardinals did.

“The offenses didn’t do much there in the 2:00,” Mike Vrabel said. “We’ll have to figure that out.”

Like Tannehill, Taylor Lewan warned against reading too much into the offensive inability to get the ball moving in a crucial situation.

After the first drive stalled the second first-team attempt ended when Tannehill’s throw for Racey McMath was intercepted inside the front right corner of the end zone by Byron Murphy.

Malik Willis threw an interception to Tae Daley on a pass intended for Mason Kinsey that killed one second-team drive, on another, he threw a fourth-down pass out of bounds that had no chance of converting.

There was little or no Robert Woods involved in the offense and Treylon Burks was not part of any of it.

The failures were not all about the pressure, the coverage factored in too.

“A couple of times we had plays that have been effective for us and they just ended up being bad leverage against the coverages they were playing, which made it tough, Tannehill said.

With no game plan for pressure looks from the defensive front the Titans had not discussed or prepared for, players were left in a situation where they had to try to sort things out on the fly. Tannehill said that can happen in meaningful games with “maybe one look as opposed to a bunch.”

“We want to be as poised and as instinctive as possible,” Vrabel said. “Let your rules help you and sort things out. We’ve got rules at all levels of each call. Try to fix problems, figure it out quickly, take a hit off the quarterback in protection, make a play as a receiver.

"Defensively, it’s the same thing, if it’s something new, if it’s a new scheme, the safety’s got to be able to figure it out and get the guy on the ground and save a touchdown for those bad things that come up.”

Tannehill said minimizing the damage while figuring things out is a big emphasis.

“When those situations come up, stay true to your process, try to make the best decision protection-wise with the rules that we’ve been given and then take care of the football whether it’s throwing it away or just being safe with it, making sure you’re not making a bad situation worse by doing something reckless with the football.”

Arizona’s second-team offense managed the lone touchdown in the 2:00 work, which was the highlight of a Kuharsky megaphonepractice where the teams didn’t do a lot else against each other. Jontre Kirklin sidestepped Chris Jackson and created a lane for himself to turn a short pass to the left from Trace McSorley into the period’s only touchdown.

Kyler Murray saw another drive killed with a 10-second runoff connected to a penalty.

Notes: Theo Jackson returned from an injury at the start of the week and played some nickel as the Titans are thinned out at the position with Elijah Molden out Wednesday and Shakur Brown recently placed on IR. … DeAndre Hopkins will miss Arizona’s first six games because of a suspension. He made a remarkable catch in red zone one-on-ones against Kristian Fulton, snatching the ball out of the air with one hand (while the other hand was on Fulton's chest).

Willis threw a terrific deep ball to Mason Kinsey against Jackson and Tre Avery, but as with many of the rookies' best throws, it came after he had the ball for a long time after the snap. There was zero pressure on the play. …Punter Ryan Stonehouse continues to work as Randy Bullock’s holder, a job he would also take over if he beats out Brett Kern.

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