Some selected thoughts from my notes on yesterday’s Titans-Bears game:
It was an impressive first drive by the Bears but the Titans defense pretty much shut them down after that.
Brandon Jones is stepping up, Justin McCareins is not, and Jones should be starting. McCareins was absent on the day the Titans finally put the ball in the air as their primary method of attack. Justin Gage dropped a couple of balls early but got it going later with a few catches and a touchdown.
Tony Brown, William Hayes, Kevin Vickerson and Dave Ball were all on the field at the same time on one series. Who would have thought a few months ago we would see that, except for mop-up duty.
Eric King filled in pretty well for Nick Harper. I still don’t know why Buffalo released King two years ago. He’s been a valuable addition to the team.
Matt Forte is one heck of a player. He led the Bears in both rushing and receiving, accounting for 126 of Chicago’s 243 yards, approximately half of their total offense.
It’s hard to run against nine-man fronts and the Bears held the Titans to only 20 yards rushing. They crowded the line more than any other team the Titans have faced this year.
When you play with fire you often get burned, so I was surprised that the Titans gave Devin Hester a few chances to return the ball. Fortunately, he didn’t break a long one, except for a 41-yard kick return. Although Chris Carr doesn’t present the same threat as Hester, I thought Carr played just as well, if not better than him.
Special teams play gave Tennessee an advantage in field position throughout the game. As I hoped for earlier in the year, Jason Jones and his long arms proved he might become another Antwan Odom in blocking kicks on the line.
Offense: Kerry Collins — 30/41, 289 yards, 2 TDs, 108.7 QB rating
Honorable mention: Bo Scaife — 10 receptions, 78 yards, one TD
Defense: Keith Bulluck — 10 tackles
Honorable mention: Cortland Finnegan — 4 tackles, 3 PDs, one sack, one QH, one TFL
Special teams: Craig Hentrich — 5 punts inside the 20
Honorable mention: Chris Carr — 4 PRs, 43 yards, 2 KRs, 46 yards
Honorable mention: Michael Griffin — two special teams tackles on Devin Hester
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