The 2018 season came to a bit of a bitter end for the Tennessee Titans on Sunday night. In losing to one of their biggest rivals, the Colts, they missed out on a playoff berth and gave Andrew Luck his eleventh straight victory over the team.
With 2018 now at an end, it is an appropriate time to look back on the season as a whole. Here are the five biggest observations one can make of the 2018 Titans season.
1. All the Craziness
If first-year head coach Mike Vrabel thought that life in the NFL would be predictable and consistent from day to day, he was quickly proven wrong.
In week one, the Titans participated in the NFL’s longest-ever game. Their seemingly never-ending showdown against the Dolphins featured three rain delays and lasted 7 hours and 8 minutes.
“We didn’t cover that one in the offseason manual,” Vrabel said in his end-of-season press conference.
Though the Titans’ mystical game in South Beach may have been the team’s weirdest experience of the season, it was far from being their only crazy one.
At the end of Week 2, safety Kevin Byard was tied for the team lead in touchdown passes. Safety Dane Cruikshank led the team in receiving.
Following the Titans’ Week 3 victory in Jacksonville, one of their starters on offense literally quit the team. Veteran receiver Rishard Matthews, who had missed all of Training Camp with an injury, requested a release or trade due to issues with his playing time. He had just signed a contract extension with the team.
Week 4 gave Titans fans arguably the most exciting game to ever be played in Nissan Stadium. The Titans converted three fourth downs in overtime en route to a thrilling victory over the reigning Super Bowl champion Philadelphia Eagles.
Against the Colts in Week 11, the Titans lost a member of their coaching staff early in the game. Defensive coordinator Dean Pees was taken to a nearby hospital in Indianapolis due to symptoms resembling a stroke. Tennessee’s defense imploded after that, ultimately allowing the Colts to score 38 points in a one-sided loss.
Through the end of November, running back Derrick Henry was among the NFL’s least productive ballcarriers. In the month of December, he turned things around and became one of the most productive. More on that to come.
Further searching and nitpicking would probably reveal more crazy things that the Titans were forced to endure in 2018, but this list should suffice.
The Titans had to put up with a lot this season, and most of the things they had to put up with can’t exactly be mimicked with practice reps.