NASHVILLE – Make it five in a row.
The Titans traveled to Los Angeles over the weekend and took care of business once again. The team's 28-16 win over the Rams might be the most impressive win to date for the 2021 squad.
It turns out these Titans aren't so bad after all following the injury to running back Derrick Henry.
While some folks wrote the Titans off after Henry's injury, you guys and gals continued to write it.
Let's open up another Titans mailbag and get your thoughts …
Here's the link to ask questions: CLICK HERE.
Kev White from Salisbury, North Carolina
Question: Hey Jim! GREAT TEAM WIN! The Titans showed that this isn't the Tennessee Henry's but the Tennessee Titans. The offense held together without the King (speedy and healthy recovery to him). But the Defense, showed that while they aren't a shutout D, they fight hard and will make you hurt. I'm becoming a huge fan of Mr. Autry who was all over the field. Byard is such an intelligent player. Simmons is a force of nature. The entire D was excellent. What would you like to see from the offense as they acclimate to a reality without the King? Oh yeah, definitely have to play on the whole Return of the King theme once Henry gets healthy. Take care, Jim.
Jim: It was definitely a great win, Kev. As for the offense, it's going to be a process in the running game with the backs, but I think they'll get more comfortable in time with practice and reps.
Jabari Jackson from Atwater, California
Question: Hey Jim. I hadn't written in to the mailbag in a while so I figured now was as good a time as any. 1st off I loved the post game article and the In-N-Out reference, well played sir. Am I crazy for hoping national media continues to not give this team the respect it deserves? Seems to me like the boys are playing with a chip on their shoulders. I loved the gameplan on both sides of the ball. Kudos to Bowen for not trying to get too cute offensively and change the identity of our offense. Lastly, based on what you saw in the backfield, who starts against the Saints on Sunday?
Jim: Appreciate it, Jabari. I love me some In-N-Out – ate there Saturday night! Don't worry about a lack of respect, because in the long run it doesn't mean anything. Remember how much praise the Bills were getting before they played the Titans a few weeks ago? Well, how much praise are they getting now, especially after losing to the Jaguars? The Titans need to focus on wins, not the national media grins. I do agree Bowen deserves a lot of credit for how the defense is playing. As for the running backs, all three – Adrian Peterson, D'Onta Foreman and Jeremy McNichols – will continue to be utilized.
Brett Heard from Nashville, Tennessee
Question: I hope Henry is able to get into the RB meeting room soon with Peterson there. As bad of a man Henry is, it could be very dangerous for the rest of the NFL for Henry to be able to pick the brain of a future HOF'er for the rest of the season.
Jim: I have no doubt that's going to happen, Brett. There's mutual respect between the two running backs. Henry was already back in the building last week, in fact.
Greg Moore from Jackson, Tennessee
Question: Jim, What function does Jim Schwartz perform with the Titans now? The defense last night sure had the "May the Schwartz be with you " look.
Jim: Hey Greg. Schwartz is senior defensive assistant. And while he's been a great resource for the coaching staff, and I have no doubt he's helped, let's not forget about DC Shane Bowen. If Bowen is going to catch blame when the defense plays poorly, he deserves props with this much-improved unit performs well.
J.B. Wilson from Fort Worth, Texas
Question: Hello Mr. Wyatt. I was born and raised in Nashville, my family has been there since the 1800s. My family still lives there. In August 2013 God called me to Dallas. And I continue to live in the DFW area. I am 30 and have been watching the Titans since I was 13 or so. We always got the paper growing up and I always would read your articles in the sports section.
Our son James is 5, Laura is 3, and Nathaniel is 1. James is at a fun age and we watch the Titans together. My wife enjoys watching as well. Somehow someway we find a way to watch or listen. James loves to pretend to be Derrick Henry and he is always saying "Woooo, Derrick Henry, my guy! Touchdown Titans!" 😂
Last night me James and Laura watched a few minutes before I put them to bed. they were wondering where Derrick Henry was and I told them he was hurt but he will get better. They seemed quite concerned so In their bedtime prayers they prayed for him and told me to pray for him too to get better.
They told me to tell him we prayed for him. So, I am hoping you can somehow let him know the Wilsons are praying for him from Ft. Worth!
It was a great game to watch, it is really cool to see our defense getting better and better.
Thanks for covering the Titans and other sports teams through the years.
I miss Nashville but I am glad I can still keep up with my teams.
God bless you and we will keep y'all in our prayers, J.B., Emily, James, Laura and Nathaniel Wilson
Jim: Love this story, J.B. Thanks for sharing. I was at your airport around 6 a.m. yesterday morning on my way back from Los Angeles! Will let Derrick know the Wilsons are praying for him. Thanks again.
Franky Markle from Dyersburg, Tennessee
Question: #1… Thanks for keeping us up to date with everything going on with our team! Your mailbag is a must read every week. #2…. WOW!!! What a showing from the boys in navy blue!! I love the all navy uniforms. What is our record in all navy? We play like bullies in those uniforms. #3. My prediction…. I feel like Foreman is going to be the best RB on the roster until 22 gets back.
What's your thoughts on Foreman?
Jim: Hey Franky. Appreciate you reading.
I checked with Titans Uni Tracker (@TitansUni) and they shared the record with the all blues.
They don't track with sock color, but with navy jerseys & britches the record is:
Since the re-design, it's:
As for Foreman, I thought he ran the ball well vs the Rams, and probably earned himself some more carries.
Chris Berry from Cleveland, Tennessee
Question: I'm not going to lie, I didn't think Sunday night was going to go well for us. Amazing effort by the defense and although the offense wasn't special; they did convert the short field opportunities into crucial touchdowns. Props to Vrabel & Bowen for having the defense ready to play with an extra edge. Obviously, the D-Line had their moments in the spotlight but I think Chris Jackson has quietly played really well when he's been on the field. Couple of quick questions:
+I remember during draft season that there was talk about Radunz being a possibility to play multiple positions (Guard/Tackle). Maybe I was mistaken, but was there any thought that he might be ready to play instead of Bobby Hart? No disrespect to Bobby against a really tough Rams d-line, but he just looked out-matched.
+Secondly, on a huge night for the D-Line; I don't remember hearing Bud Dupree's name come up. Should we start to be concerned yet or can we still chalk it up to coming back from injury?
Jim: Hey Chris. I'd be lying if I told you I thought the Titans would dominate the way they did. And, make no mistake, this was a dominant performance. I agree with you on Chris Jackson, and Vrabel praised him on Monday, too.
As for Radunz, he's just not ready. It's really as simple as that. For now, the team is more comfortable with others ahead of him. Vrabel offered some praise for Radunz on Monday as well, but he clearly has to get better.
I wouldn't worry about Bud. He made it back from ACL a lot quicker than most after having the procedure in December. And, he had a mammoth rush in the fourth quarter, when he forced Rams QB Matthew Stafford to get rid of the ball before he wanted to on a fourth-down stop for the Titans.
Eric McClellan from Metropolis, Illinois
Question: Hey Jim. Appreciate all you do covering this franchise. I'll cut right to it. I am so proud of this Titans team, that came for the 4th week in a row as an underdog, that flat out punched a really good LA Rams team right in the mouth. Week in, week out we are dealing with injuries...and the "next man up" responds in a huge way. I was sick to death of all the sports commentators this past week writing the Titans off as dead in the water. Cannot wait to see them all eat a little crow after this latest performance by the Titans. Can the Titans start to get a little respect? It isn't always pretty, but our boys always come to play and lay everything they have out on the field. PS, I think a lot of folks out there owe Shane Bowen an apology. He has this unit believing in themselves and each other no matter the opponent.
Jim: I'm with ya, Eric. And I agree on Bowen as well.
Adam Blair from Springfield, Tennessee
Question: Hey Jim. This has been an impressive stretch for our Titans. I know the signing of Adrian Peterson got a lot of the headlines but I was excited that we brought Donta Foreman back. That guy is a bruiser that just needs a chance to shine. I have also been impressed with NWI as a receiver. How possible is it that he moves up the ranks of our receiver unit to the #3 option (passing Reynolds, Rogers, and Johnson)? I've been impressed with his ability to make the tough catch, as well as contribute as a blocker AND play special teams.
Jim: Hey Adam. All these guys are different. Julio and A.J. are the top two, and everyone else is working to find a role. Westbrook-Ikhine has done a nice job. He's caught the ball when it's been thrown his way, and he has the confidence on the QB and the coaching style. He's passed Josh Reynolds on the depth chart, and he's outperformed a lot of guys this season. He just needs to keep it up.
Douglas Vaughn from Memphis, Tennessee
Question: Jim, I just read your six things that stood out from the Rams game. But even before that I was going to ask if this off season MUST include locking up 'Big Jeff' for the future. Pressure from the interior is difficult to find at the level Simmons plays at. As much as I enjoyed watching him perform, I was actually feeling kind of bad for the Rams guard trying to block him. Think an extension is 'Job 1' for JRob? On another note, take away 14 points off turnovers and a late mop up TD by Rams and this is a 14-9 game. Both D's looked really good, but it seems neither offense was particularly sharp. Or were both defenses really just that good last night?
Jim: Thanks for reading, Douglas. The GM will have a lot of things on his 'To Do List' this offseason. Remember, Harold Landry's deal will be up at the end of this season, while Simmons will still have another year on his deal. … Personally, I didn't feel bad for the Rams offensive linemen trying to block him. Just sayin' … The Titans defense was good, there's no doubt about that – they made more plays on defense, and controlled the game while setting the tone right out of the gate.
Henry Martin from Kingsville, Texas
Question: Hello from Kingsville, TX!!! OH MY GOODNESS!!! I am COMPLETELY speechless and shocked at how we played this game, conservative on offensive/aggressive on defense. Through this four-week gauntlet we have shown nothing but a lot of heart and resiliency. This has to be one of our best defensive performances this year. We just continue to find ways to win and our backups are answering the call with all the injuries we have sustained. Impressive!!! Shout outs to the entire Titans organization and fan base. Let's keep this thing going!!!! #TITANUP
Jim: Thanks for writing in, Henry.
Carol Thomas from Chattanooga, Tennessee
Question: WOW!!! So very proud of the way EVERYONE stepped up vs the Rams!! GREAT TEAM EFFORT!!! It seems as if that goal line hold against the Bills weeks ago by our Defense really put the fire underneath them. It has been a joy to watch them come through week after week, but especially tonight. TitanUp!!!
Jim: Good to hear from you again, Carol.
Steve Tilton from Safford, Arizona
Question: Hello Jim, what a crazy game last night. I was (and still am admittedly) shocked at the Rams constant penalties. Not that the Titans were perfect, but the Rams seemed out of character. My question is whether you have heard from coach Vrabel, or perhaps coaches in the past, about whether our team contributes to the opposing team's penalties by way of our physicality and prepared confidence? Perhaps the tenacity of our D got in the Rams players' heads a bit. It seems our team was prepared, confident, and ready to dictate the tempo, and I felt that we completely shell-shocked some of the Rams players (especially their o-line). It is a testament to the coaching staff in having our players ready to play. Maybe my ego is a bit swollen as a fan, but it sure felt like our team's resilience got in the heads of the Rams players and perhaps led to some of those penalties I mentioned. Is such a line of thinking valid in the NFL?
Jim: Hey Steve. The Rams did lose their composure a number of times on Sunday night. I definitely think the Titans frustrated them. I just think it's an emotional game and players lose their cool from time, especially when they haven't been faced with a lot of adversity. I think that's what happened to the Rams on Sunday. But we've seen the Titans make some mistakes, and they've gotten some penalties in frustration as well. It just goes with the game, I think.
Cliff Cushman from Spring, Texas
Question: Hey, there J.W.! I don't know who started calling you that but I like it & I'm borrowing it. Did you see Aaron Donald & those pressures & sacks? Especially that one int the end zone! No, wait. That was Jeffrey Simmons outplaying Mr. D.P.O.Y. and the rest of the Rams. Simmons isn't on Donald's level, but I love watching those guys fly around the ball on defense. To me, a football team is like gumbo. Throw ingredients in a pot & let it simmer. This year's gumbo, on defense, sure is tasty. Is the new ingredient Jim Schwartz? Naming Shane Bowen D.C.? Denico Autry? More red meat in the cafeteria? Well, our front seven has been so effective that we have stopped worrying about injuries in the secondary. Looking ahead, we need to find our groove on offense & take advantage of a soft schedule to finish the regular season. I must point something out. How many times has our fan base whined about not getting respect from the national media? We are a small market & will never get the love that N.Y., L.A., Dallas or Pittsburgh receives. Let's stop asking for it and take it by kicking everyone's teeth in. Past Titans teams win a big game or two, get a little recognition, then lose games to inferior teams due to complacency. You know who doesn't care what the media thinks? Mike Vrabel. I love that about him. That's why I think we stay motivated and keep grinding. TITAN UP!
Jim: Oh man, Cliff, this turned into a street fight near the end. Just like the Titans like it.
MaryAnn Turman from Murfreesboro, Tennessee
Question: All the "experts" are saying the Titans are finished for the year without Derrick. We are not a winning team without him, and the Colts will pull ahead of us.
Please tell The Boys and Couch Vrabel, the fans think the experts are idiots. The Titans are more than one player. I for one Believe in our team and know the Boys will prove everyone wrong.
Jim: Hi MaryAnn. Well, what happened on Sunday night was a good start in proving the doubters wrong…
Lucas Vooys from Aldie,Virginia
Question: Hi Jim, Is there a chance the Titans could make it to the Super Bowl? Also could you give a shoutout to The King when he gets back and A.J. Brown. They are my motivation to play! Thanks!
Jim: Hey Lucas. Of course there's a chance. The Titans have proven so far they have one of the best teams in the league. But they're going to have to stay healthy, and they're going to have to keep playing well. Teams don't punch their ticket into the big game in November.
Have a great week everyone!