By BLAKE BEDDINGFIELD, special correspondent

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Titans matched up versus the Dolphins well on paper, and after Sunday took care of business on the field.

The Titans defense forced the Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa into long yardage conversions.

Anthony Firkser

© George Walker IV / Tennessean.com / USA TODAY NETWORK

This Dolphins offense is dysfunctional in its personnel design and the Titans defense took advantage of that.

When a team like Miami struggles to run the football successfully it allows the defense to dictate the flow of the game.

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AFCSouthChampsNASHVILLE, Tenn. -- They provided cause for doubt along the way, with the lineup holes due to injury and Covid, the turnover problems, the anemic offense, the losses to really bad teams and more.

But we can bury that right now. The Titans destroyed the Dolphins, improved to 11-5, clinched a second straight AFC South title and are a win away from the AFC South's No. 1 seed.

Pretty crazy, right? 

We gathered to discuss the big win over Miami and all that came with it.

You can watch to the chat through the private Facebook page or head below the line.

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Titans thorough 34-3 handling of the Dolphins at Nissan Stadium should effectively serve as a save the date card.

Please join us Sunday, January 30, 2:05 p.m. CT for the AFC Championship Game at Nissan Stadium, or set aside the time to view the game on CBS.

David Long

© George Walker IV / Tennessean.com / USA TODAY NETWORK

Yes, yes, I know.

Nothing is a given. Great NFL blueprints get torn up every week.

But the 11-5 Titans have paved the easiest imaginable path to get to and host the game.

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Happy New Year from all of us (meaning me) to all of you.

I hope it's a giant weekend and that the Titans get the job done for you on Sunday.

Here is the best of what you gave me in response to the request for mail.

Dolphins vs.Titans

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Scouting preview: Titans' defense lines up perfectly with Miami offense

By BLAKE BEDDINGFIELD, special correspondent

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Miami Dolphins are fighting for their playoff lives.

They started the season with one win and seven straight losses but are currently riding a seven-game win streak.
Ryan Tannehill

Courtesy Tennessee Titans

The Dolphins are much like the Titans in that they find a way to win games.

The Titans need this win to clinch the AFC South, though the Raiders can also do it for them Sunday by beating the Colts.

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Tua Tagovailoa’s game doesn’t seem particularly complicated. But as the Titans prepare to face his Miami Dolphins, they will have some things to figure out.

Tagovailoa and Miami pass over 65 percent of the time on first down because of their anemic run game, one of the things that should make him a predictable pass rush target. But the shifty signal-caller's been sacked only 13 times in 302 dropbacks.

Denico Autry

© Steve Roberts-USA TODAY Sports

More remarkably, a quarterback who’s generously listed at 6-foot-one has only had one pass attempt batted down by a defensive lineman near the line of scrimmage all season.

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. – A couple of days after the Titans' loss to the Steelers, Mike Vrabel talked about one play where three defenders missed a tackle on Najee Harris. The result was not the typical problem from such a development.

“They gained a yard,” Vrabel said. “Guys were running. You don’t love the three missed tackles, but you love the swarm.”

Jeffery Simmons

Pool photo/ Donald Page, Tennessee Titans

Vrabel’s Titans have always been pretty good about converging on the ball. But in the last three weeks they’ve amped it up in an unmistakable way. In some TV shots that cover half the field and show a play being made on the sideline, it seemed all but a few guys appeared on the screen.

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. – To ensure the AFC South title resides in Nashville for the second consecutive year, the Titans need to win one of their final two – against Miami and at Houston – or have the Colts lose one of their final two – against Las Vegas or at Jacksonville.

NaQuan Jones

Pool photo/ Donald Page, Tennessee Titans

The odds are in their favor. The New York Times playoff simulator gives them a 99 percent chance of that, with a 69 percent chance of hosting a wild-card-round game and a 24 percent chance of securing the No. 1 seed and the lone first-round bye.

Here are five Titans who need to maintain their recent level or raise their game to help them maximize their position:

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