JOE BIDDLE: Titans can't win for losing, fall to Colts 22-14 - WKRN News 2

JOE BIDDLE: Titans can't win for losing, fall to Colts 22-14

Posted: Updated: Dec 1, 2013 9:30 PM CST
NASHVILLE, Tenn. -

Let's face facts.

The Indianapolis Colts have the Titans number. Since 2003, the Colts own a 18-4 record against the Titans. Pathetic. The Colts have won nine of the past 10 games.

They get their giggles beating up on the two-tone blue. It was 22-14 at Lucas Oil Stadium Sunday, leaving the Titans with a dismal 5-7 record, winless in the division and hopes for a wild card berth quickly fading to black.

The Titans were striving to stay in the AFC wild card chase and had every opportunity to beat a Colts team coming off a loss against Phoenix after the Cardinals held them to only 163 yards on offense.

But if you're the Titans and your offense can't score more than 14 points, you're not going to beat many NFL teams. When safety George Wilson drops a sure interception with no Colt around him deep in Indy territory, you don't win close games. When linebacker Moises Foiku gets a 15-yard unnecessary roughness penalty to turn a fourth-and-17 situation into one of Adam Viniteri's five field goals, you're not going to win close games.

When you run Chris Johnson up the middle on your first two plays of the game, get a measly four yards and go three-and-out from the Colts 43 yard line after Bernard Pollard intercepted a Luck pass, it speaks volumes about the Titans inability to take advantage of scoring opportunities.

Don't look now, but your Titans are turning into the Texans and Jaguars.

On the other side of the field, Indianapolis had Luck on their side. The second year quarterback didn't always look like the first player picked in the 2012 NFL draft, but then again it's the results that count.

"Luck found a way to will this team to a victory,'' Colts Coach Chuck Pagano said. Maybe Pagano has something to do with it. After all, his team is now 9-0 after they lose a game under his watch.

"We know we can't survive our mistakes forever,'' Luck said after the game. "But sometimes you have to gut out a win.''

When it came time to win the game, Luck and the Colts found an answer. The Titans never knew the question. They kept tripping over their own feet. They are their own worst enemy.

With 8:16 left in the game and the Colts clinging to a 15-14 lead, they found themselves taking possession on their own 8-yard line.

This is where NFL teams earn their bones.

Eleven plays later, nine of them coming on the ground, Donald Brown went in from four yards out by punching through the middle of the Titans defense. It came on the first play after the 2-minute warning.

That made it an 8-point deficit for the Titans, and a last-ditch drive was snuffed out by Fitzpatrick's third interception.

Fitzpatrick suffered his worst day since he joined the Titans. He had a past history of being plagued by interceptions and added three more after not throwing one in the last three games. Earlier, he was stripped of the ball, creating another turnover.

"You always have to give them credit. That being said, I didn't play well today in a lot of different aspects,'' Fitzpatrick said. "You can't turn the ball over like that and expect to win.''

For someone who has a Harvard degree, Fitzpatrick made some dumb decisions against the Colts.

And, it's not like the Colts are world-beaters. They are playing without their best wide receiver, future Hall of Famer Reggie Wayne. Running back Trent Richardson has been a bust, so they are relying on journeyman Donald Brown.

"We all know you can't turn the ball over,'' Munchak said. "Obviously there were some balls he'd like to have back. We're 0-4 in the division and you're not going to win your division at 0-4.''

Munchak is definitely under the gun as his team has been unable to mount a win streak needed to get into the playoffs.

He ticked off some of the losses this season, many of them were games they could have won, but didn't.

"We're there, but we can't finish a game,'' Munchak said. "We make too many mistakes for whatever reasons.''

Obviously he hasn't found answers for those reasons. Time is running out for the Titans, and for Munchak.

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

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