The Chargers had the ball at the one-yard line, first and goal. On the clock, just 34 seconds.On the sideline, Titans rookie A.J. Brown knows what he was thinking. “Honestly,” Brown said with a smile, “if I was the coach, I would have let them score so we’d have a chance to get the ball back and have a chance to score.”Then, something crazy happened.
Titans linebacker Wesley Woodyard knocked the ball out of the hands of Chargers running back Melvin Gordon at the goal line on a second-down play – just moments after a Los Angeles touchdown call was reversed. The ball ended up on the arms of defensive lineman Jurrell Casey, who was in the end zone.
A review confirmed the fumble, and the scene at Nissan Stadium did, too – the Titans had pulled off an improbable win, 23-20 over the Chargers.
“I would say the win probability was a high 96 percent for them to win,” said Woodyard. “But we fought, and we defended every blade of grass. We kept fighting, and we never gave up.”
Casey could hardly believe it as he celebrated with his teammates.
“The ball dropped into my arms,” Casey said. “The next thing you know, the crowd was going crazy and we’d won the game. It was crazy. But man, we needed this. This is huge.”
The Titans improved to 3-4 on the season with the win on a day quarterback Ryan Tannehill stepped in as the team’s starting quarterback.
Tannehill played well, throwing for over 312 yards a pair of touchdowns while engineering one impressive drive after another. Tannehill ended up completing 23-of-29 passes with the two scores, and he finished with a passer rating of 120.1.
What had been a stagnant offense in recent weeks with Marcus Mariota at the helm suddenly looked more potent, and 22 first downs and 403 yards of offense was a welcome relief. Running back Derrick Henry did his part, too, rushing for 90 yards and a touchdown.
“It felt good,” Tannehill said of the offense. “Obviously we did some good things, moved the football, put some points on the scoreboard. Guys played extremely hard from the beginning of the game. I’m really proud of the way the guys played.”