Thursday, January 4, 2018

Nine Year Drought

The Titans arrived to Tennessee in 1997 and so did I.  I've been a fan ever since.  I moved to DC a decade ago and the first chance I got to see them play here was in October, 2008. They played in Baltimore versus the Ravens.  The Titans came to town with a perfect 4-0 record.  We were led by Kerry Collins or as we liked to jokingly call him, the drunk.  It was a defensive battle but the Titans pulled out a 13-10 victory and I walked out of the stadium with a grin.

The Titans would go on to win their next five games to reach 10-0.  As a fan, it was as good as it gets.  Ten games, ten wins.  Generally, one could say that sports fans either live in the past or are waiting for the future.  When our teams are bad, we reminisce about the glory days.  And when they are very good, we wait for the playoffs and dream about championships.

Brett Favre ended the Titans run at perfection.  Not Brett Favre the legendary Green Bay Packers Super Bowl winning quarterback but Brett Favre the New York Jets QB.  The most memorable thing he did in New York was send inappropriate text messages to a female sideline reporter.

As for Tennessee, they finished the year with the best record in the NFL, 13-3.  They were the number one seed and got a first round bye.  Baltimore made the playoffs as the 6th seed.  They easily won their wild card game against the Miami Dolphins.  Out of all the teams, the Ravens have always been a thorn in the Titans' side.  In 2001, they upset the number one seeded Tennessee in the second round and went on to win the Super Bowl.

Fast forward to January of 2009 and the Ravens came to Nashville with a very good defense and a rookie QB, Joe Flacco.  It was another hard fought defensive battle.  The Ravens managed to shut down the Titans by forcing three turnovers.  They won the game 13-10 and took away Tennessee's dream of returning to the Super Bowl.

You would think that the Titans would bounce back quickly.  They have not.  Last year the Titans would have had a chance to play for the division and a playoff stop in week 17 if the Cincinnati Bengals could defeat the Houston Texas in week 16.  In that game, with five seconds to go, the Bengals missed a game winning 43 yard field goal and put an end to the Titans chances.  It's been nine full years since Tennessee made the playoffs.

But this year is different.  On the last day of 2017, the Titans escaped with a 15-10 victory against the visiting Jacksonville Jaguars.  And with that win, they earned a playoff spot!  They will travel to Kansas City in the state of Missouri (go figure) to take on the Chiefs.

The nine year playoff drought has finally ended.  There is snow on the ground in DC and it is very cold.  But for us Titans fans, things are just heating up!

Go Titans!

2 comments:

  1. A sad, jealous Bears fan wishes your team luck and success!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you, you have hockey and baseball champions at least from recent years.

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