After the Tennessee Titans shocked the majority of the football world by securing the top seed in the American Football Conference in 2021, they proceeded to squander that accomplishment by suffering a defeat at the hands of the Cincinnati Bengals in the Divisional Round.
The Titans were defeated by the squad that ultimately made it to Super Bowl LVI. It would be understandable if the Titans viewed that game with the thought that they should have been taking on the Los Angeles Rams at SoFi Stadium rather than the Bengals.
Nevertheless, if you ask the Titans of 2022, all of it is now in the distant past. The Tennessee Titans are a new team with new aspirations that have nothing to do with Cincinnati, with the exception of the fact that the Titans will once again play home to the Cincinnati Bengals this upcoming Sunday.
Just make sure you don’t bring up the subject of revenge to Ryan Tannehill.
Tannehill told reporters on Tuesday, “Just like I said after Thursday night, that was last year,” referring to the previous event. It’s not like half of this team was even in attendance. Both of these squads are brand new to the competition. This is obviously a competition that we want to prevail in. However, this has nothing to do with the year before.”
Tannehill was honest with reporters about the mental toll the loss had on him during the offseason, telling them that it had left a “deep scar” that required counseling in order for him to be able to move on to the 2022 season. Tannehill’s performance in the game, which featured three interceptions and directly led to Tennessee’s upset loss, was a primary reason why the loss was so disheartening, and it was one of the primary reasons why.
Tannehill’s comeback season has not been highlighted by a statistically impressive performance, but he has been productive enough to lead the Titans to a 6-2 record in games in which he has started. In general, Tennessee is once again in a solid position, as they lead the AFC South with a record of 7-3 heading into Week 11.
The point that Tannehill makes about the rotation of roster members is correct. When the Titans were defeated by the Bengals in January, rookie receiver Treylon Burks, for instance, was getting ready for the draft in 2022. According to 104.5 FM, Burks refuted any suggestion that his team will be out for retribution this weekend, telling reporters, “We’re just going to go out there and play ball.” The Danger Zone
Mike Vrabel, the head coach for Tennessee, mirrored the comments that Ryan Tannehill had expressed, referring again to changes in the team’s composition since the Divisional Round.
It would appear like Vrabel wants his guys to take exactly that approach heading into Week 12 of the season.
According to Jeffery Simmons, a defensive tackle for the team, “I’m looking around and saying, ‘damn, half of these guys weren’t even here [for the playoff loss],” he remarked, as quoted by ESPN.com. “However, this is a very different team. We are concerned about what will happen in this year’s playoffs, but we are not concerned about what took place in the playoffs of the previous year.
“The only thing that matters is this year and how we can come out on top on Sunday,” he said.
With a victory, the Titans would improve their record to 8-3, giving them an unassailable lead in the division as the month of December approaches. In addition to that, such a victory would not mean all that much to the long-term future for Tennessee, which has gone through a large number of personnel changes to once again become a contender.
The majority of people, similar to the previous season, aren’t looking forward Nashville as a viable title challenger this time around. Even if they win on Sunday, that won’t alter anything, and that’s just OK with Vrabel’s crew since they’d rather keep a low profile. However, it may shed new light on Tennessee’s potential, which, after losing its first two games of the season in a row, was not exactly soaring to new heights.
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