If you had just beamed down from Mars to watch the Titans host the Bills on Tuesday night and had no previous knowledge of these two teams heading in, you’d likely point to Buffalo as the team that hadn’t played in nearly two weeks and barely hit the practice field. Tennessee showed little to no rust in what ended up being a 42-16 blowout win to close out Week 6. Ryan Tannehill was sharp, missing just seven passes on the night while totaling four touchdowns (three passing, one rushing). Meanwhile, the defense was able to keep Bills quarterback Josh Allen at bay and forced three turnovers in the win. 

This was all especially impressive by Mike Vrabel’s club as they really have not been able to normally prepare for quite a while thanks to the team’s spat with a COVID-19 outbreak. Because of the spread of the virus within the organization that saw around two dozen players and/or staff get infected, the Titans weren’t in the best standing throughout the rest of the NFL as a number of games needed to be rescheduled. Following the win on Tuesday, Tannehill was a bit perplexed as to why his club was being looked at with such vitriol. 

“Yeah, we were under a lot of heat. Honestly, I didn’t quite understand it why we were under such heat,” Tannehill said, via Pro Football Talk. “But we stuck together, believed in each other and knew that the guys in our building on our team were all we needed. … Under some heat, obviously, for a couple of weeks and it felt really good to be able to go out and play and kind of shake that off.”

Of course, the reputation that Tennessee gained over the last couple of weeks was that it was being careless with the protocols that were put in place by the league. In that time, reports were surfacing about a potential penalty that the Titans may face, especially after a group of players were seen working out together amid the facility shutting down. That said, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell did tell CBS’ Jay Feely prior to kickoff on Tuesday that the Titans did not willingly violate protocols, possibly setting the stage for little to no punishment here. In any event, judging by Tannehill’s comments, Tennessee is used the hate they’ve received as fuel for this matchup and will likely continue to do so going forward. 

“We said a lot of things (in meetings) throughout the past couple weeks and things are being said, personal things that were said against our team, our guys and it really felt uncalled for,” Tannehill said. “So yeah, we were a little ticked off about how we’ve been treated, how we’ve been looked at over the past couple weeks and really just stuck together through that process and believed in each other and wanted to come out and play our game and play how we believe in each other and knew what we could do and we did that.”

Next up for the Titans is another home matchup against the Houston Texans on Sunday afternoon. 

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