Jim Wyatt, Senior Writer/EditorTitansOnline.com
Offense. Defense. Special Teams. The Titans took care of business in all three phases on Sunday to win at Jacksonville on a day when quarterback Marcus Mariota completed 15-of-27 passes for 215 yards and a touchdown.
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The Titans weren’t looking for revenge.On their first trip back to EverBank Field since last year’s costly loss to the Jaguars in December, the Titans came looking for a chance to set a tone. They wanted to put their goals for 2017 in motion, and begin their quest to rule the AFC South.
Mission accomplished.The Titans beat the Jaguars in impressive fashion here on Sunday, rolling up a 37-16 victory with a dominating performance in the second half. The win evened Tennessee’s record at 1-1.
Quarterback Marcus Mariota completed 15-of-27 passes for 215 yards and a touchdown in the win. He was sacked just once. Running back Derrick Henry ran for a career-high 92 yards on 14 carries, and produced a touchdown.
The defense also forced some key turnovers.
Adoree’ Jackson helped provide a spark with a big return in the third quarter, and the rout was on.
With the Titans leading 9-3, Jackson fielded a punt and sprinted up the middle and to his left for a 46-yard return, which put the ball at the Jacksonville 34.
After a Mariota pass to tight end Delanie Walker for 17 yards, the Titans busted it in on a 17-yard run by Henry, who ran through cornerback Jalen Ramsey at the goal-line for a touchdown to make it 16-3.After the defense forced a three-and-out, the Titans didn’t waste much time in finding the end zone again.
A diving catch by receiver Taywan Taylor provided a 42-yard gain, and put the Titans at the seven. After a Henry run, Walker scored on a one-yard touchdown run to give the Titans a 23-3 lead.
Later, rookie tight end Jonnu Smith caught a screen pass from Mariota and raced 32 yards into the end zone for a 32-yard touchdown to make it 30-3. The Jaguars scored on a one-yard run from running back Leonard Fournette to cut the lead to 30-9. A three-yard touchdown run by fullback Jalston Fowler made it 37-9 with 4:14 left before a late Jacksonville score.It was a much better result for the Titans, who lost to the Raiders in Week One.
This one started off slowly.
The Jaguars took an early 3-0 lead on a 43-yard field goal by kicker Jason Myers.The Titans then answered back with an 11-play, 53-yard drive that was capped off with a 40-yard field goal from kicker Ryan Succop.
The second turnover set up a 41-yard field goal by Succop at the end of the first half, which gave Tennessee a 6-3 lead. The Titans drove 38 yards in the final 2:13 of the first half to take a 6-3 lead at the half.
The Titans forced another turnover early in the third quarter, and turned it into points. Safety Da’Norris Searcy intercepted Bortles, and returned it to the Jacksonville 39. The Titans drove inside the Jacksonville 10, but had to settle for another field goal, this one a 26-yard kick by Succop to make it 9-3 with 9:24 left in the third quarter.
The Titans face the Seahawks next Sunday at Nissan Stadium.