JOE BIDDLE: Titans take frustrations out on toothless Jaguars - WKRN News 2

JOE BIDDLE: Titans take frustrations out on toothless Jaguars

Posted: Updated: Dec 30, 2012 05:50 PM
NASHVILLE, Tenn. -

First question I have for the Titans defense: Where has this been all season?

The Titans defense never rested Sunday in front of a surprisingly larger home crowd than expected, given the Titans record and coming off a 55-7 blowout in Green Bay.

It was a record-setting day and rookie linebacker Zach Brown got it cranked up for the defense by intercepting a pair of Chad Henne passes and taking them 79 and 30 yards for touchdowns.

The first one turned out to be a possible 14-point turnaround as the Jags were deep in Titans territory when Brown picked off a Henne pass to turn a 21-7 deficit into a 14-14 tie.

Brown had a chance to make it a trifecta, but he dropped a sure interception earlier in the game. He had a clear path to the end zone had he caught the ball.

"The first one, I dropped it, but coach (Mike Munchak) told me (Henne) would throw me another one. I was just waiting for it. He threw it to me two times and I should have had two more,'' Brown said after the Titans closed a disappointing season on a high note with a 38-20 win.

"(Henne) had a tendency to stare down where he wanted to throw it, so I just took a little "quick peek' to see who was over there and I just ran to the closest guy.''

Brown's next stop was the end zone.

Brown does need work on his touchdown dance, but the Titans defense has not afforded him much practice time.

"That's the money dance,'' Brown explained. "We do that every time we get an interception in practice or a game.''

"I never knew (Brown) could even catch the ball,'' defensive tackle Sen'Derrick Marks jokingly said. "He did good. He read (Henne's) eyes. When he dropped that first one, we came to the sidelines and talked about it. When we get a chance to make plays, we need to make them. He went out there and made two of them.

"You watch him in college and when he catches the ball, he's hard to catch. He's pretty fast.''

So how much can the Titans take out of this feel-good game that left them with a six-win season? They finished with a win, but considering the competition I wouldn't count on too much carryover into next season.

It was the Titans lone win against AFC South teams. By any measure, they still have a long way to go to challenge Houston and Indianapolis in the division.

Running back Chris Johnson thinks making the playoffs a year from now is not out of the question.

"We haven't been to the playoffs in so long, so you don't want to go out there and say that we are going to have a Super Bowl team next year (Glad he cleared that up.) but it's a situation where I feel like we have a lot of talented guys on this team," Johnson said.

"If everybody can just step up and continue to make plays and play like we did (Sunday) I think there is a good chance that we can make it to the playoffs.''

Look for a number of changes before next season, both on the Titans coaching staff and on the roster. It's unfair to judge this team on the Green Bay meltdown, and equally unfair to judge the Titans on the season finale.

Young players such as quarterback Jake Locker, linebackers Akeem Ayers, Brown and Colin McCarthy have to step up their play in the off-season.

Munchak is expected to get another year to show marked improvement and it's imperative the Titans have a solid draft class.

"I keep saying there is a lot of excitement on this team going into next year and the year after because of the type of players that we are adding to this team,'' Munchak said.

"If we can add a few more pieces, I think you are going to see something I think is going to be exciting to watch.''

Titans fans will surely hold Munchak's feet to the fire on that.

 Contact wkrn.com Sports Columnist Joe Biddle at joebiddle11@gmail.com.

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