The Tennessee Titans kept their playoff hopes alive with Saturday’s 25-16 comeback win over the Washington Redskins. But the win may have come at a costly price for the 9-6 Titans, who need to find a way to beat Andrew Luck and the Indianapolis Colts for the first time ever next Sunday.
Quarterback Marcus Mariota left the game for the third time this season with the stinger/elbow injury that continues to plague him.
Also, Pro Bowl defensive lineman Jurrell Casey left the game in the fourth quarter with a left knee injury that looked to potentially be serious with so little of the season remaining.
Mariota exited in the second quarter, after being sacked by Redskins defensive lineman Jonathan Allen. He immediately went to the locker room with the half nearly over and did not return.
After the game, Mariota was in the locker room but was not made available to the media.
“He’s still being evaluated,” Titans coach Mike Vrabel said.
Mariota was 10 of 13 for 110 yards before leaving with the injury. When asked if the injury was related to the numbness he experienced from previous injuries this year to the right arm, Vrabel mostly dodged the question.
As for Casey, he sustained a left knee injury late in the game and did not return. The Pro Bowl defensive lineman hobbled off the field and went to the medical tent. In the locker room after the game, Casey declined to be interviewed, as he did not wish to talk about the game or the seriousness of his injury.
Redskins cornerback Josh Norman tried to push and nudge Titans left tackle Taylor Lewan after the game, and had to be restained by a Redskins coach and by Titans center Ben Jones, as Lewan walked away from the altercation.
Asked about the incident in the locker room after game, Lewan said the matter started because Norman was acting up and apparently taking cheap shots at Derrick Henry late in the game.
“I’m not worried about Josh Norman. I’m an offensive lineman. Like he’s a DB. I don’t know who that is,” Lewan said. “I was pissed. He was trying to hurt Derrick during that four minute (offense), and that’s B.S. That’s not the way football is supposed to be played.”
Asked to elaborate on what started it, Lewan said, “He tackled him, and he was throwing around. It was like a temper tantrum. I was trying to get Derrick up and he (Norman) was throwing a hissy fit. That would probably be a better question for Derrick. Those are my guys. It’s a hard enough game as it is. There injuries everywhere. There’s no need in people trying to hurt you more. That ain’t gonna help in any situation, man. It’s football. We’re all in this together. So I don’t understand.”
Not as much, but still effective
Derrick Henry was a marked man for much of the day, coming off back-to-back games where he totaled 408 yards in wins over the Jaguars and Giants.
The Redskins held Henry to 84 yards and a touchdown on 21 carries, but the Titans running back still managed to get big gains when it counted most. In the fourth quarter, Henry had 40 of his 84 yards, that coming on seven carries, including an 18-yard run to the 2 to set up the winning score.
“I feel like I could have played better, but I played well enough for us to win. So I’m happy.”