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Titans-Bills Game Notes

Posted Oct 21, 2012

JOHNSON’S RUSHING DAY: Chris Johnson finished the game with 18 carries for 195 yards (10.8 avg.) and a pair of touchdowns.  His 195 yards in a single game tied for 11th in franchise history, and the performance was the third-best of his career, topped only by a franchise-record 228 yards against Jacksonville (Nov. 1, 2009) and a 197-yard game against Houston (Sept. 20, 2009).

CJ’S FIRST TOUCHDOWN: Chris Johnson crossed the goal line on a 16-yard run in the first quarter.  His 39th career rushing touchdown was his first since scoring two at Buffalo on Dec. 4, 2011.

JOHNSON HITS 6,000: In the first quarter, Chris Johnson reached the 6,000-yard rushing mark for his career.  He became the third player in franchise history to reach the mark, joining Eddie George (10,009) and Earl Campbell (8,574). 

JOHNSON BREAKS AN 83-YARDER: With the Titans and Bills tied at 7-7, Chris Johnson notched his 40th career rushing touchdown on an 83-yard run.  Johnson is now the NFL’s all-time career leader with four touchdown runs of 80 yards or longer.  He broke a tie with four other players who previously had three 80-yard touchdown runs: Barry Sanders, Ahman Green, Hugh McElhenny and O.J. Simpson.   Johnson’s run was the fifth-longest in franchise history and the fourth-longest of his career.  Also, it was his 10th career run of 50 yards or longer.  Johnson recorded his 13th career game with two rushing touchdowns.

THREE FRANCHISE BACKS EACH WITH 30 GAMES OF 100 RUSHING YARDS: Chris Johnson reached the 100-yard rushing mark for the 30th time in his career.  He joined Earl Campbell (39) and Eddie George (36) as the only players in franchise history to reach the mark.  As a franchise, the Oilers/Titans are the only club in NFL history to have three different players with 30 or more 100-yard rushing games.

HARPER SCORES ON PAIR OF ONE-YARD RUNS: Second-year running back Jamie Harper scored a pair of touchdowns for the Titans, each on one-yard runs.  His first put the Titans ahead 21-14 in the second quarter, and in the third quarter, he put the Titans up 28-20.  It marked his first career multiple-touchdown game.  The former fourth-round draft choice entered the contest at Buffalo with two previous career scores.

FOUR RUSHING TOUCHDOWNS FOR TITANS: The Titans reached the end zone four times on rushing plays—two by Chris Johnson and two by Jamie Harper.  It marked the first time the club scored four rushing touchdowns in a single game since Nov. 27, 2008 at Detroit.  They have accomplished the feat three times in the “Titans era” (1999-present), with the first occurrence on Oct. 19, 2008 at Kansas City.

ANOTHER GAME-WINNING DRIVE BY HASSELBECK: Matt Hasselbeck completed 22 of 33 passes for 205 yards with one touchdown for a passer rating of 93.6.  He notched his 199th career touchdown pass (fifth of 2012) on a game-winning 15-yard toss to Nate Washington with a minute to play in the fourth quarter.  The score capped the 22nd game-winning drive of his career (series in which his team takes the lead for good in the fourth quarter or overtime after the team trailed or was tied at the start of or during the fourth quarter) and his second consecutive week with a game-winning drive.  He helped the Titans with a late drive for a last-second field goal on Oct. 11 against Pittsburgh.  Hasselbeck now has 80 total career victories as a starter (80-70).

WASHINGTON SCORES THE GAME-WINNER: Wide receiver Nate Washington did not have a reception in the first half.  However, he came back in the second half to lead the team with six receptions for 43 yards. On the game-winning series late in the fourth quarter, he caught a 19-yard pass and a 15-yard touchdown.  Washington extended his streak of consecutive games with at least one reception to 69 (55 games with the Titans). 

STEVENS SETS CAREER HIGH FOR A SEASON: Tight end Craig Stevens caught a 17-yard pass on Tennessee’s opening drive.  It gave Stevens a new career high for receiving yards in a season (173), surpassing his 2011 total of 166 yards.

SACK, FORCED FUMBLE FOR WIMBLEY: On the opening drive of the third quarter, Titans defensive end Kamerion Wimbley sacked Ryan Fitzpatrick and forced a fumble that was recovered by Derrick Morgan.  It gave Wimbley two sacks in 2012 and 44.5 sacks in his seven-year career.  Wimbley now has nine career forced fumbles (one in 2012).  The takeaway at Buffalo resulted in a touchdown for the Titans.

McCOURTY HAS AN INTERCEPTION IN CONSECUTIVE GAMES: For the second consecutive week, cornerback Jason McCourty recorded a critical interception.  After picking off a pass Oct. 11 against the Steelers to end a drive and set up a Titans field goal, he intercepted a pass by Bills quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick intended for Donald Jones to help set up the game-winning touchdown drive in the fourth quarter.  It was the second time in his career McCourty posted back-to-back games with interceptions (Sept. 18-25, 2011).  He now has six career interceptions in four NFL seasons.

TITANS REACH END ZONE ON OPENING SERIES: On their opening drive of the game, the Titans scored on a 16-yard run by Chris Johnson.  It marked the first time in 2012 the Titans scored a touchdown on their first series.  They recorded opening-drive field goals against the Patriots (Sept. 9) and Steelers (Oct. 11).

MOST FIRST-HALF YARDS IN MORE THAN TWO YEARS: The Titans totaled 260 net yards on offense in the first half, the most by the team in the first half of a game since Sept. 12, 2010 against Oakland (264).  They finished the game with 390 total net yards.

RED ZONE SUCCESS: The Titans were perfect in the red zone against the Bills, scoring on all four of their appearances inside their opponent’s 20-yard line.  Over the last four weeks, the Titans have scored touchdowns on nine of their 12 trips inside the 20, following a one-for-six success rate in their first three games.

PLUS-TWO IN TURNOVERS: The Titans were a season-best plus-two in turnover ratio against the Bills.  They did not commit a turnover and recorded takeaways on an interception by Jason McCourty and a fumble recovery by Derrick Morgan (fumble forced by Kamerion Wimbley).  The Titans extended their winning streak to 38 games when they have a turnover ratio of plus-two or greater.  The last game they lost with a margin of at least plus two was against the Cleveland Browns on Sept. 22, 2002.

PRODUCTIVE ON THIRD DOWN: The Titans converted nine of their 14 third downs at Buffalo.  Their 64.3 percent conversion rate was their best of the season through seven games and their highest percentage in any game since converting 64.7 percent (11 of 17) against the Bills on Nov. 15, 2009.

LOW PENALTY NUMBERS: The Titans’ three penalties against the Bills tied their season low (Sept. 9 vs. New England), and the 25 penalty yards called on them was the lowest total of the season through seven games.

ONE-POINT WIN: The Titans’ 35-34 victory marked the 10th time in franchise’s 53-year history the team won a regular-season game by one point.  They have one additional one-point win in the playoffs.

DILES STARTS BUT LEAVES WITH INJURY: With Colin McCarthy out with an ankle injury, Zac Diles started for the Titans at middle linebacker.  It marked Diles’ first start since Jan. 2, 2011 as a member of the Houston Texans against the Jacksonville Jaguars.  However, Diles had to leave the field on the defense’s first series of the game with an ankle injury and did not return.

INACTIVES: The Titans’ seven inactive players against the Bills were quarterback Jake Locker, running back Javon Ringer, cornerback Tommie Campbell, linebacker Colin McCarthy, tackle Byron Stingily, guard Deuce Lutui and wide receiver Lavelle Hawkins.  Locker missed his third consecutive game with a left (non-throwing) shoulder injury, while McCarthy missed his fourth total game this year with an ankle injury.

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