Bills Stunned by Titans
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Derrick Henry showed once again how important he is to the Tennessee Titans.
This time, he had help from the Tennessee defense.
Henry scored his third touchdown with 3:05 left, and the Titans stopped Josh Allen on a fourth-down quarterback sneak in the final seconds to beat Buffalo 34-31 on Monday night, snapping the Bills’ four-game winning streak.
The AFC East-leading Bills drove to the Titans 3 on their final possession and could have sent the game to overtime with a field goal, but instead went for the win — and didn’t execute.
First, Allen was marked shy of the first-down marker on a scramble. On fourth down, the rugged quarterback moved from the shotgun to take the snap under center. Tennessee’s defensive line surged forward to meet Allen, whose legs went out from under him before Titans tackle Jeffery Simmons smothered the quarterback.
The Titans (4-2) took over with 12 seconds left to start a much-needed celebration for the battered defending AFC South champs.
“We got some dogs over there,” Henry said of Tennessee’s defense. “They fight to the end. They showed it right there.”
Henry came in as the NFL’s rushing leader even with most teams in the league having played six games, and he finished with 143 yards, topping 100 for the fifth consecutive game. It’s the longest streak in the NFL since DeMarco Murray had eight straight in 2014 for Dallas.
The 2020 AP Offensive Player of the Year also had a 76-yard TD run and a 3-yarder. His long TD — the first of seven lead changes in the game — came with the Titans trailing 6-0 early in the second thanks to the defense holding the Bills to a pair of early field goals.
“We continue to jump on Derrick’s back, and he’s willing and able to carry us,” Titans coach Mike Vrabel said. “And it’s just something that you know you have in your back pocket, front pocket. We pull it out and we use it. It just gave us a big shot of life there.”
Quarterback Ryan Tannehill added another TD run against a Buffalo defense that came in ranked third against the run.
Harold Landry had two of the Titans’ three sacks, and Kevin Byard intercepted a pass.
The Bills (4-2) wanted to go for the win instead of playing for OT, and the fourth down caught Buffalo slightly off guard. Bills coach Sean McDermott said officials initially signaled Allen got the first down on his third-down scramble. McDermott said he talked after the game with referee Clete Blakeman, who told him an official radioed down from the box that Allen had come up short.
“We didn’t get it done,” McDermott said.