Scouting preview: Ryan Tannehill learning new weapons and Patriots' defense simultaneously

By BLAKE BEDDINGFIELD, special correspondent

NASHVILLE, TENN. -- The Titans have beaten some of the best teams in the NFL this season, they just happen to have lost to two of the worst along the way.

That doesn’t make them any less of a contender.Ryan Tannehill

Pool photo/ Donald Page, Tennessee Titans

The Patriots are playing Patriot football again behind rookie quarterback Mac Jones.

He is an accurate quarterback who limits mistakes and that is just the type of football New England thrives on.

If there is ever a game for the Titans to get refocused with, this is it.

The Titans will be without Derrick Henry, Julio Jones and A.J. Brown, so what can they do to attack the Patriots' defense?

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Tennessee’s loss to the Texans took some of the shine off Sunday’s Titans-Patriots matchup in New England, but it’s still a prime AFC game.

The Titans are still atop the AFC at 8-3 and the 7-4 Patriots have won five in a row and taken over the lead in the AFC East.

Mike Vrabel has beaten his old team and his old coach, Bill Belichick, in his two chances since becoming the Titans’ head coach.

Mike Vrabel

Pool photo/ Donald Page, Tennessee Titans

Tennessee won 34-18 at Nissan Stadium on Nov. 11, 2018, and then took down the Patriots at Gillette Stadium in the wild-card round of the playoffs on Jan. 4, 2020, in Tom Brady’s final game with the franchise.

With a third matchup against Belichick looming, Vrabel has done well to downplay that angle.

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. – His awful four-interception performance Sunday – aided by others on the Titans’ offense for sure – dropped Ryan Tannehill’s season passer rating nearly 5 points.

“At the end of the day, it all falls squarely upon me,” he said. “I have to be better.”Ryan Tannehill

Pool: Donald Page/ Tennessee Titans

The defense keyed two wins in three games since Derrick Henry went down and those are the results that matter. But Tannehill has not yet taken on more, and Tennessee will need him to if this season is going to have anything close to the happy ending that is in the franchise’s plans.

He’s trending in the wrong direction since the Titans lost Derrick Henry to a foot injury.

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Scouting review: How things went so badly for Ryan Tannehill

By BLAKE BEDDINGFIELD, special correspondent

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The Titans got the opportunity to play one of the worst teams in the NFL.

But they gave life to a team that had lost eight straight games.

To say this Texan team is competitive is doing an injustice to other teams in the NFL that have a competent roster.Dontrell Hilliard

Dontrell Hilliard/ Pool photo, Donald Page, Tennessee Titans

The Texans have roughly 10 players on this roster that will be on the 2022 team and two of them (Laremy Tunsil and Jonathan Greenard) didn’t play against the Titans.

This is a roster full of wavier-wire-type talent.

In my time working in football, no matter what level of football you play if you allow a team to stick around and give it hope anyone can play with anyone for a half of football.

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The “best” team in the AFC has now lost to the Jets and the Texans.

As good as the Titans have been, as high-quality as their six consecutive wins were, they do a lot to dent that stretch and create doubt with a performance like Sunday’s, one that doesn’t wash away as easily as the scoreboard operators at Nissan Stadium would like.Ryan Tannehill

© Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

They simply erased 22-13 seconds after it was over. That’s not how it will work for professionals on the team or the fans who endured the rain to watch it and the halftime ceremony installing Jeff Fisher and Floyd Reese in the franchise’s Ring of Honor or the devotees who endured it on TV.

(The Fisher/Reese 1999 Super Bowl team lost to the 4-12 49ers, by the way, if that makes it any easier to stomach. I didn't think so.)

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PK112121NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Too many interceptions, too many mistakes.

For the last six weeks, the Titans looked like a team that could find a way to win against anyone despite anything.

And then they played a complete 22-13 dud against the lowly Texans that was on par with their complete dud from Week Four against the lowly Jets and it makes you wonder about who they are and what they are capable of, exactly.

I still think they are way more good than bad, but that's was not the bulk of the conversation we had after the game.

So members, catch up on the Sunday post-game conversation from Nissan Stadium below the line or on the private Facebook page. If you're not signed up for text messages to alert you to these broadcasts, the link for that is below the line as well. 

If you are not a member, you can rectify that in no time, and get the best coverage and analysis of the team by joining the club here.

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Scouting preview: Titans can find right plays for each RB vs. Texans

By BLAKE BEDDINGFIELD, special correspondent

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The Texans are one of the worst teams in memory.

They have a top-five NFL quarterback sitting on their bench healthy in Deshaun Watson and continue to pay him a star quarterback salary.

If that isn’t dysfunction then I don’t know what is.

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The Texans have very few NFL starting-caliber players on their team.

With depleted draft classes the past two seasons, thanks to Bill O’Brien and his trading of first-round picks, they have very few young players to build the franchise behind.

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