By: Brendan Smart (@bsmart21)
Remember when the New England Patriots were embarrassed in their season opener to the Kansas City Chiefs 42-27 in New England? I do, and for some reason I remember every quote Tom Brady said following that game. One quote in particular can explain the Tennessee Titans, and their recent success since week 17 against Jacksonville.
Brady was asked what he thought about the Chiefs after getting beat by them, and was asked in the same breath if the team was Super Bowl caliber. Brady responded with, “It’s all about when a team peaks. Kansas City played really well tonight, but it is all about when a team is peaking.”
Bad news for Brady, but the Titans are at the peak of their game, and are big underdogs heading into a hostile environment. Not only underdogs, but 13.5 point underdogs, and that is ridiculous. I get it, Brady has five Super Bowl rings, but his offense has not been the best this season. Since when did Vegas start picking point favorites based on the past? Of course the Titans should be underdogs, but 13.5 is almost a discredit to the work they’ve put in the last few weeks.
Underdogs, something the Titans have used very well this postseason. Being underdogs in some cases is good for certain teams, and for the Titans it has been a huge motivator. The leaked reports about Head Coach Mike Mularkey’s job status from week-to-week, inconsistent play calling offensively, all of it has made them the “worst team to make the playoffs.”
To all of the big media that leaked reports about Mularkey getting fired, and this team being the “worst team to make the playoffs,” do your homework. If anyone watched the film, Mularkey knows that the play calling has been inconsistent and has gone to Quarterback Marcus Mariota sooner in games. The talent on this roster is simply not appreciated enough, a second year safety leading the lead in interceptions, and a massive 6’4 truck running the ball down opponent’s defenses in no huddle offenses is simply absurd.
Of course the Patriots have a lot of underrated players in their own right, but New England has not been the dynasty they once were. Brady’s numbers have not been like the past, but of course they haven’t been, he’s aging. Not only aging, but taking hits, and saving his body for this time of the year. Granted their scoring a lot of points, but their schedule this season was so easy. (Miami Dolphins twice, New Orleans Saints, Denver Broncos, Buffalo Bills twice, and Los Angeles Chargers).
Not going to jinx this team, but the locker room needed something positive outside of the 50+ men in that locker room. At the end of the day, the Titans are not as big of an underdog as many think. Tennessee will take on New England at 7:30 central time on CBS Saturday night.