NASHVILLE, Tenn. —Six thoughts after Sunday's 30-8 loss to the Jets:
It's never a good thing to make the highlights after a lopsided loss, and the Titans weren't spared in the wake of the lopsided defeat to the Jets. Two plays seemed to be on a loop: Jets receiver Brandon Marshall being left uncovered, and Jets running back Bilal Powell streaking to the end zone with some Titans defenders looking a little hesitant to slow him down. Those two plays will be highlighted in defensive meeting rooms on Monday, and they should be. The Titans simply aren't good enough now to make it easy on any team.
Props to Casey
The Titans caught a bad break when the communication device went out to the field, or upstairs. As a result, the coaches weren't able to get a defensive play-call onto the field before the 69-yard touchdown pass from Ryan Fitzpatrick to Marshall. What I noticed at the snap was defensive lineman Jurrell Casey recognizing it at the last second and busting his rear end to get to Marshall. What I'm surprised I didn't see was someone in the secondary seeing the same thing before it was too late. Marshall's a pretty big guy to miss.
Mariota reaches feat with hands**
It seems like every week, Marcus Mariota adds a unique accomplishment to his resume, and he did it again on Sunday. With his 41-yard catch on Sunday, Mariota became the first NFL player in 2015 to pass for a touchdown, rush for a touchdown and catch a touchdown pass. Prior to Mariota's feat, the last player to record touchdowns of at least 40 yards passing, rushing and receiving in the same season was former Bears running back Walter Payton, in 1983. Mariota has already proven to be a guy capable of doing just about anything.
The Titans were young and inexperienced at the receiver position on Sunday. The team played veteran Harry Douglas, and three rookies – Dorial Green-Beckham, Tre McBride and Andrew Turzilli. I was impressed with Turzilli, an undrafted free agent out of Rutgers, in training camp before his injury, and I thought he handled himself well in his NFL debut back home on Sunday. Turzilli made two catches for 25 yards, including an 18-yarder across the middle. I'd like to see more of him down the stretch.
The Tennessee Titans take on the New York Jets in Week 14 at MetLife Stadium. (Photos: Donn Jones, AP)
Mularkey is doing it his way**
Time – and perhaps the results of the final three games of the season -- will tell whether Titans interim coach Mike Mularkey can keep the job on a permanent basis. But one thing is clear, and that is he's not afraid to shake things up. Mularkey has made captaincy changes, lineup changes and more since replacing Ken Whisenhunt. On Sunday, cornerback Blidi Wreh-Wilson and running back Bishop Sankey were among the team's inactives. Mularkey hasn't hesitated to shake things up, so it will be interesting to see if more changes are on the horizon following a loss that clearly left him disturbed.
Be ready for the Patriots
The Titans were slow out of the gate against the Jets, falling behind 27-0 by halftime. By the time the team turned up the intensity, the game was lost. Believe me, I've seen worse. I was in Foxboro in 2009 when the Titans lost 59-0 to the Patriots after falling behind 45-0 by halftime. Well, the Patriots are up next. This New England team doesn't have Randy Moss, but they still have quarterback Tom Brady and plenty of firepower on offense. The Patriots are ranked third in the NFL in offense. The Titans need to play with intensity from the get-go to avoid a repeat of Sunday.