Mike Vrabel: Derrick Henry understands his responsibility to our team and how to prepare

NFL: OCT 10 Titans at Jaguars
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The Titans may have strong receivers in Julio Jones — who hasn’t played since Week Three — and A.J. Brown, their offense relies on running back Derrick Henry to have any success.

And as quarterback Ryan Tannehill recently said, Henry just seems to be built different.

Henry led the league with 397 touches last year and with the added game, he’s on pace for 530 in 2021. He currently leads the league with 142 carries, 640 yards, and seven rushing touchdowns. Only the Cardinals have slowed him down at all, limiting him to 58 yards in the season opener. Since then, Henry’s rushed for 182, 113, 157, and 130.

It doesn’t seem like that should be sustainable for any running back, but Henry’s led the league the past two seasons in carries, yards, and rushing touchdowns so it feels silly to dismiss the possibility.

“Derrick understands what his responsibility is to this football team and how to prepare,” head coach Mike Vrabel said on Monday, via Teresa M. Walker of the Associated Press. “We just have to try to be as smart as we can with recovery and how it’s going in the game and how he feels. Then there’s a fine line there between knowing what he needs and the impact he has throughout the course of the game. You see how he ran in the fourth quarter.”

Henry took nine carries for 58 yards in the final period of Tennessee’s 37-19 win over Jacksonville on Sunday, including a 10-yard touchdown.

Henry has played 69 percent of the Titans’ offensive snaps so far in 2021, which is just a bit higher than his mark of 66 percent from last year. He’ll at least have one extra day to recover heading into Week Six, as Tennessee takes on Buffalo next Monday night.