Jacksonville Sports Day

NFL: Titans Too Fast and Furious for Jaguars in 42-20 Win

Photo by Rick Wilson/Jaguars

NASHVILLE – Tennessee scored three touchdowns in less than five minutes to start the second half and rolled to a 42-20 win over the Jacksonville at Nissan Stadium Sunday afternoon.

If it wasn’t for a couple of Titans miscues it could have been a worse beating. The Titans scored touchdowns on three consecutive plays on offense.

“We gave up some big plays, getting reached on the big run,” said Jaguars head coach Doug Marrone said. “When you’re not a very good football team, those things spiral out. We’re going to get a lot of questions; going to give everyone a gut check. We’ve got to keep our nose down.”

Jacksonville QB Nick Foles completed 32 of 48 passes for 272 yards and no touchdowns with no interceptions.

Jaguars running back Leonard Fournette rushed for 97 yards and two touchdowns on 24 carries.

Tennessee QB Ryan Tannehill completed 14-of-18 passes for 259 yards and two touchdowns while also running for 40 yards and two scores.

Running back Derrick Henry ran for 159 yards and two TDs. A.J. Brown caught four passes for 135 yards, including a 65-yardr from Tannehill.

On the first possession of the third quarter, after a halfback pass from Henry to tight end Jonnu Smith drew a defensive pass interference penalty, the Titans had the ball at the one-yard line.

That’s when Tannehill completed a one-yard touchdown pass to tackle-eligible Dennis Kelly as the Titans took a 14-3 lead with 13:13 left in the third.

Less than three minutes later, Henry took off and scored a 74-yard touchdown, reminiscent of his 99-yard touchdown run against the Jaguars in December of 2018.

Henry ended up in the end zone, and that made it 21-3 with 10:40 left in the third.

“I was similar,” Henry said of last year’s scoring scamper. “I was trying to keep them away. I kept trying to stay inbounds and keep moving down the field, and it worked again.”

After linebacker Daren Bates forced a fumble – and recovered it – on the ensuing kickoff, Henry scored again, this time on a seven-yard run, which made it 28-3 with 10:24 remaining.

The three touchdowns came in a span of 4:36.

By scoring two rushing touchdowns in a 16-second span, Henry became the first player since Pro Football Hall of Famer LaDainian Tomlinson (two touchdowns in 15 seconds in Week 10, 2006) to score two twice within a 20-second span in a single game.

With his 74-yard touchdown run, Henry joined Napolean Kaufman (1997-99) and Robert Smith (1997-2000) as the only players in NFL history to record a rushing touchdown of at least 70 yards in three consecutive seasons.

Tannehill connected with Brown for the 65-yard touchdown, which made it 35-3 with 6:57 left in the third quarter.

“That was a fun stretch there, just guys executing,” said Tannehill, who is now 4-1 as a starter this season. “You never know what can happen. We have playmakers on this field. That was a crazy stretch. The defense got us the ball back quickly right after that first touchdown, and obviously on the kickoff return. Guys made plays. We had opportunities, and we took advantage of them.”

The Jaguars scored on a pair of one-yard touchdown runs by Fournette to cut the lead to 35-17 before Tannehill scored again on another touchdown run, which made it 42-17 with 9:47 left.

The Jaguars kicked a field goal with 4:48 left to make it 42-20.

The Titans took a 7-0 lead in the second quarter.

On a second-and-nine from the Jacksonville 21-yard line, Tannehill took off and collided with Jacksonville defender Tre Herndon at the goal-line, and after gong airborne he landed on his back in the endzone for a touchdown.

“I looked down and said, ‘Uh, oh, this is going to hurt,’” Tannehill said, smiling. “But it was fun, and it was a good opportunity to get into the end zone.”

The Jaguars cut the lead to 7-3 at halftime on a 49-yard field goal by Josh Lambo.

The Jaguars’ third consecutive loss dropped them further into last place in the AFC South at 4-7. The Titans are now 6-5. The loss was the Jaguars’ sixth in as many seasons in Nashville.

The Titans improved to 6-5 while moving to within one game of the Houston Texans (7-4) for first place in the AFC South. The Titans have now won four of their last five games after a 2-4 start, not that coach Mike Vrabel is counting.

“You know, I couldn’t even tell you how many we’ve won — I know we’ve won one in a row,” Vrabel said. “So, we’re able to just get a leg up in what we’re trying to do. Try to find our next opponent, figure out where we play them and when we play them and start to prepare for them. This will be a huge week for us with the holiday season, with the holiday, Thanksgiving and a division opponent.”

The Jaguars will play host to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at TIAA Bank Field Sunday at 1 p.m.

GAME NOTES: Jaguars right guard Will Richardson Jr. was held of Sunday’s game as a healthy scratch, with tight end Seth DeValve missing a second consecutive game with an oblique injury; Richardson, a second-year veteran, had been rotating with veteran A.J. Cann at right guard through the first 10 games of the season. … The Jaguars other five game-day inactives Sunday: Quarterback Josh Dobbs, wide receiver C.J. Board, running back Tyler Ervin, cornerback Tae Hayes and offensive lineman Brandon Thomas. (www.jaguars.com)

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