Titans are doing it the old-fashioned way; they’re running it

The Tennessee Titans are not only winning in these playoffs, but they are succeeding in a way that is different than what we have recently seen in this pass-happy NFL. On Saturday night in Baltimore, behind the running and throwing of RB Derrick Henry(threw TD pass against Baltimore), and a defense that bent but did not break, Tennessee was able to defeat the Ravens 28-12 in the Divisional Round.

The sixth-seeded Titans will now travel to Kansas City to battle the Chiefs in the AFC title game. This is a rematch of their Week 10 regular season matchup, where the Titans defeated Kansas City 35-32 in Tennessee.

Just like they did against the Patriots, the Titans gave the Ravens a heavy dose of Henry. The fourth-year back led the NFL in rushing this season, and in the playoffs, he has been a monster. Henry rushed for 195 yards and one rushing touchdown against Baltimore. In two playoff games(Patriots and Ravens), Henry has rushed for 377 yards and one rushing touchdown. Also, in four career playoff games, Henry has rushed for 561 yards, which is the most rushing yards by a player in their first four playoff games in NFL history. 

Conversely, against the Patriots and Ravens,  Titans QB Ryan Tannehill has thrown for only 160 yards, including completing 7 of 14 passes for 88 yards and two touchdowns against the Ravens. There is no need to put the ball in the air when you are getting that type of production on the ground. Now, there will come a time in these playoffs where Tannehill is going to have to put the ball in the air, which even in his limited opportunities, Tannehill has done a decent job of making it count. Of his 15 completions in these playoffs, three of them have gone for touchdowns. Fortunately for Tannehill, he has only had to throw the ball 29 times, while Henry has 64 carries in the playoffs.  

Can Henry keep this going? Well, in the regular season, Kansas City ranked near the bottom of the league in rushing defense(26th). In their Week 10 matchup, Henry rushed for 188 yards, so there is a good possibility this continues. The key for any team is to try to get out early on Tennessee and force them to be a passing team. Against New England and Baltimore, the Titans had early leads. 

Let’s not forget about this Titans’ defense. This defense is allowing only 12.5 points per game in the playoffs, and they have been very opportunistic. Tennessee’s defense has forced five turnovers, and while they gave up a lot of yards against Baltimore(530 yards), they kept them out of the end zone. 

The great thing about a great running game and a good defense is that it travels, and Tennessee will have to go on the road one more time if they want to go to the Super Bowl. 

This run for the Titans has been remarkable, but there is more work to do, and for them to accomplish their goals, they must continue to do it the old-fashioned way; they must keep running!

Ravens lead all teams with 12 players selected to Pro Bowl

The NFL announced the AFC and NFC All-Stars for the 2020 Pro Bowl presented by Verizon, which kicks off at 3:00 PM ET on Sunday, January 26, and will be televised live on ESPN, ESPN Deportes and simulcast on ABC and Disney XD – the third time the game will be available on both broadcast and cable networks.

The Pro Bowl players were determined by the consensus votes of fans, players and coaches. Each group’s vote counted one-third toward determining the 88 All-Star players who were selected to the Pro Bowl. The NFL is the only sports league that combines voting by fans, coaches and players to determine its All-Star teams. It was also the first professional sports league to offer online All-Star voting in 1995.

Thirty teams had at least one player selected to the 2020 Pro Bowl and 24 clubs had multiple players chosen as All-Stars. The BALTIMORE RAVENS, including second-year quarterback LAMAR JACKSON, placed a league-best 12 players on the Pro Bowl roster, while the NEW ORLEANS SAINTS led the NFC with seven players selected. The 2019 Ravens join the 2007 DALLAS COWBOYS (13 players) and 1973 MIAMI DOLPHINS (12) as the only teams to have at least 12 players selected to the Pro Bowl since 1970.

Twenty-five of the players selected to the Pro Bowl today are first-time All-Stars, including three rookies – defensive end NICK BOSA of the San Francisco 49ers, return specialist MECOLE HARDMAN of the Kansas City Chiefs and return specialist DEONTE HARRIS of the New Orleans Saints.

The 2020 Pro Bowl coaching staffs will be from the losing teams in the AFC and NFC Divisional playoffs with the best regular-season records.

Under terms of the Collective Bargaining Agreement, each player on the winning Pro Bowl team receives $70,000, while each player on the losing squad earns $35,000.

2020 PRO BOWL PLAYERS BY POSITION

 (*First-time Pro Bowl selection; Bold/Italic: Starter)

AFC

OFFENSE (21)

 

QUARTERBACKS (3)

 

TIGHT ENDS (2)

*

Lamar Jackson, Baltimore

*

Mark Andrews, Baltimore

Patrick Mahomes, Kansas City

Travis Kelce, Kansas City

Deshaun Watson, Houston

TACKLES (3)

WIDE RECEIVERS (4)

*

Trent Brown, Oakland

Keenan Allen, Los Angeles Chargers

*

Ronnie Stanley, Baltimore

Tyreek Hill, Kansas City

*

Laremy Tunsil, Houston

DeAndre Hopkins, Houston

 

Jarvis Landry, Cleveland

 

GUARDS (3)

 

David DeCastro, Pittsburgh

RUNNING BACKS (3)

Quenton Nelson, Indianapolis

*

Nick Chubb, Cleveland

 

Marshal Yanda, Baltimore

*

Derrick Henry, Tennessee

 

Mark Ingram, Baltimore

 

CENTERS (2)

Rodney Hudson, Oakland

FULLBACK (1)

 

Maurkice Pouncey, Pittsburgh

*

Patrick Ricard, Baltimore

 


DEFENSE (18)

 

DEFENSIVE ENDS (3)

 

INSIDE/MIDDLE LINEBACKERS (2)

Joey Bosa, Los Angeles Chargers

Dont’a Hightower, New England

Calais Campbell, Jacksonville

*

Darius Leonard, Indianapolis

*

Frank Clark, Kansas City

CORNERBACKS (4)

INTERIOR LINEMEN (3)

Stephon Gilmore, New England

Geno Atkins, Cincinnati

*

Marlon Humphrey, Baltimore

Cameron Heyward, Pittsburgh

Marcus Peters, Baltimore

*

Chris Jones, Kansas City

*

Tre’Davious White, Buffalo

OUTSIDE LINEBACKERS (3)

FREE SAFETIES (2)

*

Matthew Judon, Baltimore

*

Minkah Fitzpatrick, Pittsburgh

Von Miller, Denver

Earl Thomas, Baltimore

T.J. Watt, Pittsburgh

 

 

STRONG SAFETY (1)

 

Jamal Adams, New York Jets


SPECIALISTS (5)

 

PUNTER (1)

 

RETURN SPECIALIST (1)

 

Brett Kern, Tennessee

*

Mecole Hardman, Kansas City

 

 

 

PLACEKICKER (1)

 

SPECIAL TEAMER (1)

Justin Tucker, Baltimore

Matthew Slater, New England

 

LONG SNAPPER (1)

Morgan Cox, Baltimore


NFC

OFFENSE (21)

 

QUARTERBACKS (3)

 

TIGHT ENDS (2)

Drew Brees, New Orleans

 

Zach Ertz, Philadelphia

Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay

George Kittle, San Francisco

Russell Wilson, Seattle

 

 

TACKLES (3)

WIDE RECEIVERS (4)

Terron Armstead, New Orleans

Mike Evans, Tampa Bay

 

David Bakhtiari, Green Bay

*

Chris Godwin, Tampa Bay

 

Tyron Smith, Dallas

Julio Jones, Atlanta

 

Michael Thomas, New Orleans

 

GUARDS (3)

 

Brandon Brooks, Philadelphia

RUNNING BACKS (3)

 

Zack Martin, Dallas

*

Dalvin Cook, Minnesota

 

Brandon Scherff, Washington

Ezekiel Elliott, Dallas

 

*

Christian McCaffrey, Carolina

 

CENTERS (2)

 

Travis Frederick, Dallas

 

FULLBACK (1)

 

Jason Kelce, Philadelphia

 

Kyle Juszczyk, San Francisco

 


DEFENSE (18)

 

DEFENSIVE ENDS (3)

 

INSIDE/MIDDLE LINEBACKERS (2)

*

Nick Bosa, San Francisco

Luke Kuechly, Carolina

Danielle Hunter, Minnesota

Bobby Wagner, Seattle

Cameron Jordan, New Orleans

 

 

CORNERBACKS (4)

INTERIOR LINEMEN (3)

Marshon Lattimore, New Orleans

Fletcher Cox, Philadelphia

Jalen Ramsey, Los Angeles Rams

Aaron Donald, Los Angeles Rams

Richard Sherman, San Francisco

*

Grady Jarrett, Atlanta

Darius Slay, Detroit

 

OUTSIDE LINEBACKERS (3)

 

FREE SAFETIES (2)

*

Shaquil Barrett, Tampa Bay

Budda Baker, Arizona

Chandler Jones, Arizona

Eddie Jackson, Chicago

Khalil Mack, Chicago

 

 

 

STRONG SAFETY (1)

Harrison Smith, Minnesota


SPECIALISTS (5)

 

PUNTER (1)

 

RETURN SPECIALIST (1)

*

Tress Way, Washington

*

Deonte Harris, New Orleans

 

PLACEKICKER (1)

 

SPECIAL TEAMER (1)

*

Wil Lutz, New Orleans

Cordarrelle Patterson, Chicago

LONG SNAPPER (1)

*

Rick Lovato, Philadelphia

 

2020 PRO BOWL PLAYERS BY CLUB

PLAYER

POSITION

PRO BOWLS

ARIZONA (2)

Budda Baker

Free Safety

2

Chandler Jones

Outside Linebacker

3

ATLANTA (2)

Grady Jarrett

Interior Lineman

1

Julio Jones

Wide Receiver

7

BALTIMORE (12)

Mark Andrews

Tight End

1

Morgan Cox

Long Snapper

3

Marlon Humphrey

Cornerback

1

Mark Ingram

Running Back

3

Lamar Jackson

Quarterback

1

Matthew Judon

Outside Linebacker

1

Marcus Peters

Cornerback

3

Patrick Ricard

Fullback

1

Ronnie Stanley

Tackle

1

Earl Thomas

Free Safety

7

Justin Tucker

Placekicker

3

Marshal Yanda

Guard

8

BUFFALO (1)

Tre’Davious White

Cornerback

1

CAROLINA (2)

Luke Kuechly

Inside/Middle Linebacker

7

Christian McCaffrey

Running Back

1

CHICAGO (3)

Eddie Jackson

Free Safety

2

Khalil Mack

Outside Linebacker

5

Cordarrelle Patterson

Special Teamer

3

CINCINNATI (1)

Geno Atkins

Interior Lineman

8

CLEVELAND (2)

Nick Chubb

Running Back

1

Jarvis Landry

Wide Receiver

5

DALLAS (4)

Ezekiel Elliott

Running Back

3

Travis Frederick

Center

5

Zack Martin

Guard

6

Tyron Smith

Tackle

7

DENVER (1)

Von Miller

Outside Linebacker

8

DETROIT (1)

Darius Slay

Cornerback

3

GREEN BAY (2)

David Bakhtiari

Tackle

2

Aaron Rodgers

Quarterback

8

HOUSTON (3)

DeAndre Hopkins

Wide Receiver

4

Laremy Tunsil

Tackle

1

Deshaun Watson

Quarterback

2

INDIANAPOLIS (2)

Darius Leonard

Inside/Middle Linebacker

1

Quenton Nelson

Guard

2

JACKSONVILLE (1)

Calais Campbell

Defensive End

5

KANSAS CITY (6)

Frank Clark

Defensive End

1

Mecole Hardman

Return Specialist

1

Tyreek Hill

Wide Receiver

4

Chris Jones

Interior Lineman

1

Travis Kelce

Tight End

5

Patrick Mahomes

Quarterback

2

LOS ANGELES CHARGERS (2)

Keenan Allen

Wide Receiver

3

Joey Bosa

Defensive End

2

LOS ANGELES RAMS (2)

Aaron Donald

Interior Lineman

6

Jalen Ramsey

Cornerback

3

MINNESOTA (3)

Dalvin Cook

Running Back

1

Danielle Hunter

Defensive End

2

Harrison Smith

Strong Safety

5

NEW ENGLAND (3)

Stephon Gilmore

Cornerback

3

Dont’a Hightower

Inside/Middle Linebacker

2

Matthew Slater

Special Teamer

8

NEW ORLEANS (7)

Terron Armstead

Tackle

2

Drew Brees

Quarterback

13

Deonte Harris

Return Specialist

1

Cameron Jordan

Defensive End

5

Marshon Lattimore

Cornerback

2

Wil Lutz

Placekicker

1

Michael Thomas

Wide Receiver

3

NEW YORK JETS (1)

Jamal Adams

Strong Safety

2

OAKLAND (2)

Trent Brown

Tackle

1

Rodney Hudson

Center

3

PHILADELPHIA (5)

Brandon Brooks

Guard

3

Fletcher Cox

Interior Lineman

5

Zach Ertz

Tight End

3

Jason Kelce

Center

3

Rick Lovato

Long Snapper

1

PITTSBURGH (5)

David DeCastro

Guard

5

Minkah Fitzpatrick

Free Safety

1

Cameron Heyward

Interior Lineman

3

Maurkice Pouncey

Center

8

T.J. Watt

Outside Linebacker

2

SAN FRANCISCO (4)

Nick Bosa

Defensive End

1

Kyle Juszczyk

Fullback

4

George Kittle

Tight End

2

Richard Sherman

Cornerback

5

SEATTLE (2)

Bobby Wagner

Inside/Middle Linebacker

7

Russell Wilson

Quarterback

7

TAMPA BAY (3)

Shaquil Barrett

Outside Linebacker

1

Mike Evans

Wide Receiver

3

Chris Godwin

Wide Receiver

1

TENNESSEE (2)

Derrick Henry

Running Back

1

Brett Kern

Punter

3

WASHINGTON (2)

Brandon Scherff

Guard

3

Tress Way

Punter

1