The Tennessee Titans had been called the best 0-2 team in league history.
And the best 0-3 team in league history.
And the best 0-4 team in league history.
And the best 0-5 team in league history.
They’re now simply a crappy 0-6 team that has by all appearances given up after an embarrassing 59-0 whitewashing on the white field at Foxborough.
We’ve believed that coach Jeff Fisher has resisted benching quarterback Kerry Collins in favor of Vince Young because Fisher fears that a 4-12 or worse finish could get the longest-tenured head coach in the NFL fired. Post-game comments from owner Bud Adams suggest that, indeed, Fisher is suddenly in trouble.
“If we end up losing every game or don’t look better, I’d have to look at that pretty hard, you know what I mean?” Adams told Jim Wyatt of the Tennessean after the game, which the only owner in franchise history called possibly the low point in 50 AFL and NFL seasons.
Said Fisher, “I’m disappointed and embarrassed. Fortunately for me, career-wise, I have never been
through anything like this before and, unfortunately, it happened
tonight. I can assure you one thing, it’s not going to happen again.”
Since stuff like this rarely happens to many teams or head coaches even once, it’s pretty safe to assume that Fisher won’t see it happen again.
As the Titans enter their bye week, the question becomes whether Collins will continue to take the snaps. If there was any doubt before Sunday’s game, Collins did nothing to help his cause with a 4.9 passer rating.
The low point for the Oilers/Titans was a high point for the Patriots and quarterback Tom Brady, who connected on five second-quarter touchdown passes. The 59 points scored are the most in franchise history, as were the 691 yards of total offense.
The decision to use Brady in the third quarter with a 45-0 lead likely will spark some criticism, but Brady stayed for only one more post-halftime drive before yielding to unproven rookie backup Brian Hoyer. In a day that had seen a crazy second quarter, the last thing the Pats needed was to yank Brady and risk opening the door for what would have been a historic comeback.
In the wake of the stunning outcome, it’s obvious that the Titans are now for all practical purposes done, a season after a 13-2 start has led to eight straight losses. Even if they somehow run the table, 10-6 probably won’t get them into the postseason.
For the Patriots, the game brought back memories of 2007. The question is whether it was an aberration — or whether the Pats are finally back to the form that carried them to 16 regular-season wins two years ago.
We’ll withhold judgment on that one until the Patriots blowout someone other than the best 0-5 team in league history.