NFL

MNF Review – Simmons Stop Hands Titans Huge Win Over Bills

The Tennessee Titans took a calculated risk when drafting the injured Jeffrey Simmons with the 19th pick of the 2019 NFL Draft.

Last night, that gamble paid off handsomely as it was Simmons sack of Bills quarterback Josh Allen on fourth and one that handed the Titans victory in a hugely entertaining and even contest between two AFC contenders.

That stop allowed the Titans to run out the clock in front of a delighted home crowd to claim a 34-31 victory in what was yet another fantastic matchup between the two teams.

And it was one that may well have seen another MVP candidate for the season on display.

Bills Defense Diced By King Henry

Heading into the game, the Bills rush defense had not allowed a single player to rush more than 50 yards against them this season and their pass defense was the second best in the NFL.

Tennessee Titans running back Derrick Henry tore up that script, on 20 carries rushing for 143 yards and three touchdowns, as well as adding 13 more through the air.

With AJ Brown fighting off food poisoning to start and Julio Jones back, the Titans offensively were strong, though they did lose Taylor Lewan in the game due to concussion. The two receivers also played a key role as they put up seasons’ best numbers against the Bills defense.

The Bills offense were effective especially when taking on the banged-up Titans secondary. Josh Allen threw for 353 yards and three touchdowns, with Emmanuel Sanders, Stefon Diggs and Cole Beasley all picking up close to 100 yards receiving.

Questionable Call?

Questions will be asked about coach Sean McDermott’s call late in the game. The Bills were on the Titans 3 yard line, with just one yard to go for a set of downs, or a shot at a touchdown.

With 22 seconds left on the clock, McDermott had a choice. Kick a simple field goal and force overtime, or go for it and try to win the game.

McDermott elected for the latter and put the game in the hands of quarterback Josh Allen.

However, the quarterback keep play saw Allen stumble slightly and at the same time, Titans defensive end Jeffrey Simmons got past his blocker to fill the gap, hitting Allen square on to crush the quarterback’s momentum and leave him short of the first down marker.

Some would say it was a gutsy call, and perhaps one that the percentages suggested they would come out on top of.

However, there are many Bills fans who would have preferred to kick the field goal and take their chances in overtime against a Titans defense that the Bills picked apart throughout the game.

Henry For MVP?

It has been a long time since we had a running back win the MVP award in the NFL, however if the Titans running back Derrick Henry can continue his astonishing start to the season, then he surely has to be a contender.

Fresh from a 2000 yard season, the addition of Julio Jones to complement AJ Brown at receiver saw many experts predict a drop off in production for the running back this season.

King Henry has made a nonsense of that. In his six games so far this season for the Titans, he has rushed for 783 yards. That is 260 more than the next best rusher, Cleveland’s Nick Chubb.

In addition, he has accounted for ten rushing touchdowns, that is double the total of the next best running back on the list, Dallas’ Ezekiel Elliott.

If he can continue at this rate, then not only is he in line to become the first back ever to record two 2000-yard rushing seasons, but the single season record of 2,105 yards by Eric Dickerson in 1984 is under threat.

He is carrying an impressive Titans offense that was the reason they were still in the game for Simmons to make his late contribution to the victory and given the issues the Titans have with their injury hit secondary, the offense is likely to have to put up plenty of points if the Titans are to emerge as a real AFC contender.

Next Up?

Next up for the Titans is another huge test against the Kansas City Chiefs, a team the Bills have already beaten. A win there for Tennessee and we will be talking about them as being one of the best in the AFC.

For the Bills, it was a loss that they could have avoided, but don’t be fooled, they will bounce back from this and they are still, for the time being, the best in the AFC. They head onto their bye week after this loss.3

But they won’t want to see Derrick Henry again until the Championship game if they can avoid him.

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