If you're going to see an unlikely chance at an undefeated season end, it's hard to see it end more emphatically than this. Not only will Tennessee not go undefeated, but they have to figure out whether a 21-point loss to the Jets is just a one-week blip or a sign that this team is not as good as we think. With the Lions on the schedule for Turkey Day, they have plenty of chances to figure it out.
This game was just as much of a blowout as the final score indicates. The Jets defense dominated the Titans offense, while the Titans defense, which had manhandled almost everyone this year, couldn't get off the field. The Jets were the first team that managed to pick on the Titans' injury-hampered secondary.
The Jets started out by throwing over the Titans' defense, and just as Tennessee adjusted, the Jets turned to the running game, rushing for almost 200 yards against a defense that was allowing only 95 yards per game. Thomas Jones got the hard yards while Leon Washington has the big play -- a 61-yard touchdown that really put the game away.
Five of the last seven years, the last team to be undefeated has gone to the Super Bowl, so one bad loss isn't exactly a bad omen for Tennessee. But there are some aspects of this game that are very troubling. The Titans running game has started to disappear just at the point of the season that they need more from it. Uber-rookie Chris Johnson was held to 46 yards and Lendale White (1 carry, -1 yard) was pretty much a non-factor after dropping an easy pass early in the game.
Kerry Collins threw more than 37 passes for the fourth time in five weeks. While he's proven he's a better passer than most anyone expected, that's not exactly the Titans game plan for long-term success. The schedule gets nice and easy for much of the next month, so the Titans have some time to figure things out, and 10-0 gives you a nice cushion. But Tennessee needs to figure out how to make sure that they haven't left their best football behind them.
For the Jets, this was a very nice message that there's more to the team than just the Brett Favre story. The Jets defense shut down the Titans, and the Jets offensive line proved that it could handle one of the baddest group of defensive linemen in the league. Add it up, and this is a team that will be very interesting when January rolls around. Now we all came hope for a Jets-Patriots playoff death match.
Jets 34, Titans 13: The '72 Dolphins Are Getting Drunk Right About Now originally appeared on NFL FanHouse on Sun, 23 Nov 2008 16:15:00 EST . Please see our terms for use of feeds.