It’s been a weird first month to start the 2023 NFL season, to say the least.
Aaron Rodgers got all of four snaps into the season before the fifth one was his Achilles tendon.
Patrick Mahomes and Josh Allen both lost their openers.
Dallas falls to Arizona, who was arguably the worst team in the league last year.
It’s been crazy to say the last.
What’s even crazier is Joe Burrow signed a 5-year, $275 million extension with the Bengals—and has done absolutely nothing since.
On Sunday, the Titans exerted their will over the downtrodden Bengals and took a 27-3 win over the Bengals.
The Titans have had their issues so far this season, boasting just a 2-2 record through the first month, with losses to New Orleans and a 27-3 loss to Cleveland.
Against Cleveland a week ago, just about everything that could have went wrong, did.
But on Sunday, the Titans showed they have the personnel to not just scratch wins together, but compete against some of the top-tiered talent in the league.
Cincinnati is just 1-3 and is winless since Burrow signed his extension three weeks ago.
Burrow completed 20-of-30 passes for just 165 yards and no touchdowns.
Derrick Henry, you know the Titans’ lead running back, former Heisman winner from Alabama, and guy who usually is the first to take a handoff? He threw for more touchdown passes than Joe Burrow with a 2-yard toss to Josh Whyle with 10 seconds left until halftime.
Entering the year, the Titans were picked by pundits across the country to pick last in the AFC South and if we’ve learned anything, the division is as wide open as ever.
On Sunday, the Jaguars crushed a rebuilding Atlanta Falcon team in London; Indianapolis fell in a shootout to Los Angeles with rookie quarterback Anthony Richardson completing 11-of-25 attempts for 200 yards and two passing touchdowns. He also added another 56 rushing yards on 10 carries as well.
And then fellow rookie C.J. Stroud lit up the Pittsburgh Steelers with a 16-of-30 day for 306 yards and two more scores.
The Titans certainly have the most veteran roster and the window to win with the current personnel is closing fast.
A week ago, it was time to hit the panic button after a three-score blowout loss to Cleveland.
Now fast forward a week, and the mood in Nashville is certainly in a 180-degree turnaround from where it was this time last Monday.
If anything should be noted, it’s that the NFL is a long season and there’s a lot that has to shake out before it’s time to count the Titans out of any sort of contention.
Looking at the upcoming schedule, the Titans will face the Colts, Ravens, Falcons, Steelers and Buccaneers, all of which could be winnable games for the Titans, if Tennessee is going to make a move to the top of the AFC South leaderboard.
Even with all the topsy-turvey action going on across the NFL, the Titans have a chance to cash in on the madness, just as long as they win the games they’re supposed to, and maybe steal one or two away they shouldn’t.
Chris Siers is sports editor of the Bedford County Post. Email him at email@example.com.