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Titans-Jets Game Notes

Posted Sep 29, 2013

WINNING STREAK AT LP FIELD: Sunday’s win over the Jets gave the Titans four consecutive wins at LP Field, dating back to their final two home games of 2012.  The Titans had not won four straight home games since a five-game home winning streak in 2009.  They have an all-time record of 71-43 in regular-season games at LP Field.

ZERO-TURNOVER STREAK CONTINUES: The Titans completed their fourth consecutive game without committing a turnover.  They are only the second NFL team in the Super Bowl era (1966-present) to have zero interceptions and zero lost fumbles through the first four games.  Next week against the Kansas City Chiefs the Titans can surpass the 1995 St. Louis Rams (four games) to become the first team in the Super Bowl era to start the season with no turnovers through five games.

TURNOVER MARGIN: After recording four takeaways with no turnovers against the Jets, the Titans are now plus-nine in turnover margin in 2013.  Against the Jets, their four takeaways resulted in 28 of the team’s 38 points.

LOCKER STARTS HOT BEFORE LEAVING WITH INJURY: Jake Locker completed his first seven pass attempts against the Jets, and in the game, he was 18-of-24 for 149 yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions for a career-high passer rating of 130.0.  He completed a one-yard touchdown pass to Delanie Walker, a four-yard touchdown to Nate Washington and a 16-yarder to Justin Hunter, giving the third-year signal caller his first career game with three touchdown passes.  He has six touchdown passes in 2013 and 20 in his career.  However, in the third quarter, he was carted off the field with a right hip injury and did not return.

VERNER GETS THREE MORE TAKEAWAYS: Titans cornerback Alterraun Verner totaled three takeaways against the Jets, including a career-high two interceptions and a fumble recovery, bringing his season total to six takeaways—four interceptions and two fumble recoveries.  On the Jets’ second play from scrimmage, he intercepted a Geno Smith pass and recorded a career-long 34-yard return.  In the second quarter, he scooped up a fumble by Smith and returned the ball nine yards, and later in the same quarter, he intercepted another pass from Smith.  All three takeaways resulted in Titans touchdowns.  The game marked Verner’s fourth consecutive game with at least one takeaway to begin the season.  He picked off passes in Week 1 (at Pittsburgh) and Week 2 (at Houston), and in Week 3 against San Diego, he recovered a fumble.  Verner already has set a career high with four interceptions this season (three in 2010) and now has 10 in his four-year career.

LONG TD PASS BY FITZPATRICK: Ryan Fitzpatrick entered the game early in the third quarter in relief of Jake Locker (hip injury).  In the fourth quarter, he completed a 77-yard touchdown pass to Nate Washington, giving the quarterback the third-longest completion of his career.  In two quarters of action, the ninth-year signal caller totaled eight attempts, three completions, 108 yards, no interceptions and a passer rating of 125.0. 

BIG PASSING DAY: Against a Jets defense that ranked third overall and seventh in the league against the pass entering the game, Jake Locker and Ryan Fitzpatrick combined to complete 21 of 32 passes for 257 yards, four touchdowns and no interceptions for a passer rating of 129.8.   That is the highest passer rating for a team against the Jets since the New England Patriots (144.5) on Nov. 22, 2012, and it is the third-highest passer rating against the Jets since the start of the 2011 season.

PENALTIES DOWN: The Titans were whistled for a season-low four penalties for 30 yards against the Jets, a marked improvement since their previous game against San Diego, when they were called for 11 penalties for 116 yards. 

SUCCESS ON THIRD DOWN: The Titans converted 10 out of their 18 attempts on third down.  Their 55.6 percent rate on third down was the team’s best since Oct. 21, 2012 at Buffalo, when they converted 64.3 percent.

RED ZONE EFFICIENCY: The Titans had the ball inside New York’s 20-yard line four times, and they converted three of the chances into touchdowns.  They had two goal-to-go situations and scored touchdowns on both occasions.

TIME OF POSSESSION WIN: The Titans completed their fourth consecutive game with a time of possession of more than 30 minutes.  The last time they accomplished the feat was a four-game span in 2009, from Nov. 15 against Buffalo to Dec.6 at Indianapolis.  

FIVE SACKS: For the second time in four games, the Titans defense notched five sacks.  Against the Jets, defensive end Ropati Pitoitua led the team with a pair of sacks, and he was joined by linebacker Zach Brown, defensive tackle Jurrell Casey and defensive tackle Karl Klug with one each.  The defense posted five sacks in the season opener at Pittsburgh as well.

ANOTHER BIG DAY FOR WASHINGTON: Wide receiver Nate Washington recorded a game-high 105 receiving yards on four receptions with a pair of touchdowns.  He recorded his second consecutive 100-yard game (131 yards against San Diego) and his seventh career 100-yard game.  He had never before recorded back-to-back 100-yard games, and the Titans had not had a player accomplish the feat since Jared Cook in 2011 (Dec. 18 and Dec. 24).  In the second quarter, Washington’s 18-yard catch extended his streak of consecutive games with at least one reception to 82, including all 68 games he has played as a member of the Titans.  Later in the same series, he recorded his first touchdown catch of the season on a four-yard pass from Jake Locker.  In the fourth quarter, he recorded his 37th career touchdown reception and set a new career long on a 77-yard pass from Ryan Fitzpatrick.  On the touchdown catch, Washington also reached the 5,000-yard receiving mark for his career. 

KLUG MAKES HUGE PLAY: With the Jets backed up at their own end in the fourth quarter, Titans defensive tackle Karl Klug took down Geno Smith for a sack, and in the process, he forced a fumble and then gained control of the ball in the end zone for his first career touchdown.  It was Klug’s first sack of the season and gave him 11.5 career sacks.

FOURTH-DOWN STOP: Early in the fourth quarter, with the Jets facing a fourth-and-one on Tennessee’s 40-yard line, they pitched the ball to running back Alex Green.  However, defensive end Derrick Morgan and safety Michael Griffin were there to stuff Green for a two-yard loss.

PITOITUA TIES CAREER HIGH: Defensive end Ropati Pitoitua, who was signed in the offseason as a free agent from Kansas City, picked up his first two sacks in a Titans uniform.  He recorded his second sack in the third quarter, dropping Geno Smith at New York’s one-yard line for a 14-yard loss.  In the first quarter, he sacked Smith for an eight-yard loss.  Pitoitua now has five career sacks.

HUNTER MAKES RECEPTIONS COUNT: With only two seconds remaining in the second quarter, rookie wideout Justin Hunter came down with an acrobatic 16-yard touchdown reception on a pass from Jake Locker.  It gave Hunter, a second-round pick in the 2013 NFL Draft, two NFL receptions for two touchdowns.  His first catch was the game-winner the previous week against the San Diego Chargers.

BROWN FORCES A FUMBLE: In the second quarter, linebacker Zach Brown forced a Geno Smith fumble that was recovered by Alterraun Verner.  Brown notched his first forced fumble of the season and the second of his career.

CASEY TIES CAREER HIGH: Third-year defensive tackle Jurrell Casey forced Geno Smith out of bounds for a one-yard loss in the first half.  The sack gave Casey 8.5 career sacks and three in 2013, which ties the career high he set in 2012.   

WALKER REACHES END ZONE: Tight end Delanie Walker scored in the first quarter on a one-yard touchdown pass from Jake Locker.  It was Walker’s second touchdown reception of the season and 10th of his eight-year career.                                                                                                     

GRIFFIN HITS MILESTONE: Safety Michael Griffin played in his 100th career regular-season game.  He has never missed a game in his seven-year career.

INACTIVES: The Titans’ seven inactive players were wide receiver Kenny Britt, running back Shonn Greene, linebacker Patrick Bailey, center Brian Schwenke, tackle Byron Stingily, defensive tackle Sammie Hill and defensive end Lavar Edwards.  

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