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Six Things That Stood Out

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Six Things That Stood Out for the Titans During, and After, Sunday's Win Over the Jaguars


NASHVILLE – The Titans wrapped up the 2023 season on Sunday with a 28-20 win over the Jaguars.

Here's a look at six things that stood out from the contest:

Classy Derrick Henry

I could spend this section writing about Derrick Henry's performance on the field on Sunday, because it was plenty good. Henry ran for 153 yards and a touchdown, averaging 8.1 yards away. But what Henry did after the game was most impressive. Henry grabbed the microphone and thanked fans at Nissan Stadium "for the greatest eight years of my life." "I love y'all," Henry said to the fans in the stands. "I love seeing the 22s in the stadium. Hopefully I was an inspiration to all the young kids, and everybody in the community." Then, during his 13-minute post-game press conference, Henry spent over two minutes thanking members of the organization, from coaches to players to members of the equipment staff to the cafeteria staff to the custodial staff to the media relations staff and many, many more, calling each one by name. "Bob, with the avocados," Henry said. "He makes sure that I have my avocados every morning." It was a sincere moment that revealed what Henry's like as a person, out of uniform. After the game, in the parking lot outside Nissan Stadium, Henry took pictures and signed autographs for a big group of fans. "I am just thankful for everybody," Henry said. "I am thankful for everybody that helped me."

Tannehill's Moment

Before Titans quarterback Ryan Tannehill took the field on Sunday, he had his own moment with Henry as the two headed out of the tunnel for introductions. Like Henry, Tannehill has an expiring contract, and he believes he's played his last game with the franchise. Tannehill went out in style himself, throwing for 168 yards and two touchdowns in the game. Tannehill also expressed appreciation for his days with the team, while making it clear he'd like to keep playing, although he suspects it will be elsewhere. As the clock ticked down, while in the victory formation, Tannehill reflected on his time with the team. "I was just thinking about the moment, enjoying the moment," Tannehill said. "There were several times today where I had to step back and get emotional about a lot of things. … I created so many memories in my five years here, so many relationships on and off the field. So many fun games, it's endless. I could go on with the memories forever. I'm thankful for my time here and what it has meant to me and my family. There's definitely a lot of things I'll never forget."

Spears Shines

Titans running back Tyjae Spears made some big plays himself on Sunday, perhaps providing more glimpses of what's to come. Spears ran for a touchdown, from three yards out, and he also scored on a 28-yard touchdown catch from Tannehill. It was the first two-touchdown day of the rookie's young career. "We definitely had juice, all week," Spears said. "It was definitely big (for me to be able to make plays), but I couldn't have done it without the help of my o-line. They opened up some big holes, so you have to give it up to them. They were busting their ass, and I have to give credit to them."

DeAndre's Day, and Season

Veteran receiver DeAndre Hopkins proved to be a very successful addition for the Titans, and he ended the year slapping high fives with fans following his six-yard touchdown catch. Hopkins had seven catches for 46 yards on the day, including the score. Hopkins finished the season with 75 catches for 1,057 yards and seven touchdowns. "It felt good," Hopkins said. "I really don't think about the future – I want to control what I can. … I think these fans have embraced this team. … Coming here, it was better than expected, the love that I got. It's a great city."


The Titans had just four interceptions as a team heading into the contest, but they came up with two big ones on Sunday. Safety Terrell Edmunds and cornerback Sean Murphy-Bunting both intercepted Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence in the contest, and one of those turnovers led to a touchdown. The Titans needed more turnovers during the course of the 2023 season, but it was nice to go out on a high note here. "The interception, Azeez (Al-Shaair) is just a baller," Edmunds said of his teammate. "He tried to knock the ball up in the air, and I just had the opportunity to go out there and make it. I've got to definitely say thank you to Azeez on that."

Finishing With Class

Titans Coach Mike Vrabel preached all week about ending the season with class, and playing to the end. On Sunday, after their playoff hopes flamed out weeks ago, the Titans showed up and played hard. And, they ended the season with a win. In the process, they knocked their division rivals out of the playoffs. At the end of a long and frustrating year, it was something to feel good about. "I'm excited for the players that put so much work into it, that work hard," Vrabel said. "That's probably the most satisfaction I get, is watching everybody contribute to a victory and feel like they helped us win."

The Tennessee Titans take on the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 18 at Nissan Stadium

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