HOUSTON – Crown Titans running back Derrick Henry the NFL's 2019 rushing champion.
Henry's 211-yard performance in the team's 35-14 win over the Houston Texans here on Sunday not only helped the Titans clinch a playoff spot, it also put the running back atop all NFL backs.
"Credit to (the o-linemen), and I thank each and every one of my teammates, my coaches, trainers, and everyone who is a part of the Titans organization," Henry said. "I am just happy that we were able to get in the postseason, because that was the main goal. Any time you put the team first all the individual stuff falls in place."
Henry finished the 2019 season with 1,540 yards and 16 touchdowns on 303 carries. He went over the 100-yard mark for the sixth time on the season on Sunday.
Henry scored on touchdown runs of one, three and 53 yards on Sunday. His 53-yard burst in the closing minutes gave him the rushing title, and set off a celebration.
Henry became the first Tennessee back to win the rushing title since Chris Johnson did it with his 2,006-yard season in 2009.
"He has all the talent in the world, and I am happy to be his left tackle," Taylor Lewan said. "We were all aware he was close (to the record), saying 'He needs this much, he needs this much.'
"Any time you are the leading rusher in the NFL it should mean something."
Titans center Ben Jones said Henry's accomplishment is something the entire team will treasure.
"For me, it's something I'll never forget," Jones said. "It's something I'll tell my kids about. It's special."
Henry's total came in 15 games. Henry sat out last week's game against the Saints with a hamstring injury and he believes it recharged him.
Next up for Henry and the Titans is a playoff game against the Patriots.
"I am a competitor, and I love the game of football, so at first I was kind of down that I couldn't play (last week)," Henry said. "I kind of felt soft that this damn hamstring just kept giving me problems. But the training staff and everybody I worked with did a good job of getting me back on the field. I just thank coach (Mike) Vrabel and everyone in the organization for giving me an opportunity to rest so I would have an opportunity today to help us get in the playoffs."
The Tennessee Titans take on the Houston Texans in Sunday's Week 17 matchup at NRG Stadium. (Photos: Donald Page)