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The Titans' playoff hopes are slim
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laiyongcai92 Offline

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The Titans' playoff hopes are slim

at best after losing five of their last seven games. So Tennessee's focus for December is simple. And desperate."Try to find a way to win a game. Put our full focus on the Jets Tennessee Titans Womens Hoodie ," first-year head coach Mike Vrabel said Tuesday.The Titans (5-6) had a chance to stay in the AFC South race, but disappointing performances resulted in a 38-10 thumping at Indianapolis last week and then a 34-17 loss in Houston on Monday night.The back-to-back losses have dropped Tennessee three games behind Houston. Now five teams stand between the Titans and the second AFC wild-card slot that they squeezed into last season with a 9-7 record.If that's not bad enough, Baltimore, Indianapolis and Miami all hold a crucial tiebreaker having beaten the Titans head-to-head."We can't think about no playoffs, no nothing, anything about health," safety Kevin Byard said after the loss in Houston. "The only thing in front of us is the New York Jets."The Titans, who have lost five of their last seven, wrap up the regular season playing four of five at home. Three opponents currently are 3-8, starting with the Jets and followed by a matchup against the Jaguars on Dec. 5. Their lone road trip is a trip to New York against the Giants (3-8) on Dec. 16.Sunday's game with the Jets will be only the Titans' third home game since the end of September."We got to give our fans something to cheer about Womens Customized Tennessee Titans Jerseys ," Vrabel said.First, Tennessee needs to figure out how to give Mariota more time. No team has allowed more sacks this season than the Titans, and they gave up six to the Texans for a total of 39 through 11 games. Mariota has been sacked 35 times through 10 games and easily is on pace to top the 38 sacks in 12 games in his rookie season when Tennessee went 3-13.The Titans wasted a franchise record performance by Mariota as the quarterback completed his first 19 passes and finished 22 of 23 for 303 yards with a 95.7 percent completion rate that was second only in NFL history to Phillip Rivers' mark of 96.6 percent set a day earlier.Mariota said he can do a better job of helping his teammates."I was holding onto the ball a little too long," Mariota said. "I got us into negative situations taking some of these sacks. I'll look back at the film, I'll get better from it, and improve."The Titans also gave up a season-worst 281 yards rushing. And a team that went to Houston with the second-fewest accepted penalties in the NFL racked up seven flags for 50 yards.Now they face playing two games in the span of five days, their third in 11 days."It's all about us," Mariota said. "It's all about us taking care of our business and just focusing on what we can control."Notes: Vrabel said CB Malcolm Butler (stinger) is in the concussion protocol. He said they hope to get WR Taywan Taylor (left foot) back this week, though S Dane Cruikshank should miss another week.Follow Teresa M. Walker at teresamwalker A mediocre start won't force the Philadelphia Eagles to make personnel changes.Coach Doug Pederson reiterated his confidence in his staff and players as the defending Super Bowl champions get ready for an NFC championship game rematch against the Vikings."The sky is not falling. The sun came up today. We're 2-2," Pederson said Wednesday. "We're still in good position , control our own destiny. A lot of football ahead of us and there is no panic."As coaches we prepare our players and we prepare them extremely well. We have confidence in all our guys moving forward, and so with that, we just continue to coach and get our guys ready for Sunday."The secondary has struggled in a pair of road losses, including a 26-23 defeat at Tennessee in overtime. The Eagles blew a 17-3 lead midway through the third quarter, allowing Marcus Mariota to rally the Titans.Cornerback Jalen Mills had a tough time and fellow starter Ronald Darby also has had lapses. But defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz is sticking with Mills, a third-year pro who started 18 games last season, as an outside cornerback, and leaving second-year pro Sidney Jones in the slot."One of the reasons we had a big parade on Broad Street was Jalen Mills," Schwartz said Tuesday. "There have been inconsistencies all around, but it's our job to help him through that. It's his job to get out of that Tennessee Titans T-Shirt , and I'm firmly behind Jalen Mills. That guy's played a lot of good football for us, and he epitomizes a lot of things we're about defensively: toughness, competitiveness and ability to bounce back. And I'm confident he will."Veteran safety Corey Graham made an egregious mistake on fourth-and-15 on the final drive against Tennessee, looking away and allowing a receiver to get behind him for a catch to extend the drive. Graham played every snap in his first start filling in for Rodney McLeod, who had knee surgery. Rookie cornerback Avonte Maddox worked in at safety and Schwartz indicated he could see more time."Avonte gives us great range, he's quick, he's a smart player," Schwartz said. "He's just a little bit inexperienced and each rep he gets he will get better for us."Pederson defers defensive decisions to Schwartz."He's the expert on the defensive side," Pederson said. "He and I have conversations throughout the week. We talk about scheme. We'll talk about personnel, how we're using different defensive packages Tennessee Titans Hats , how we attack a particular offense. We're constantly talking about things like that even during the game. I listen, and quite frankly, I don't say a whole lot unless I have to. He's in charge there and he's done a great job. His scheme is sound and we just continue to coach our players and get them prepared."Notes: DE Derek Barnett (shoulder), RB Corey Clement (quadricep), DT Fletcher Cox (ankle), WR Alshon Jeffery (chest) and RB Darren Sproles (hamstring) missed practice. LT Jason Peters (quadricep) was limited. ... Sproles has missed three straight games and Clement sat out one.
02-13-2019 08:32 AM
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