NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Sammie Hill worried for a second that he didn’t get enough of the ball with his right hand to block Josh Scobee’s 55-yard field-goal attempt.
Then, the Titans lineman saw the ball fall to the ground and started celebrating.
Not the block, but Tennessee’s first win since the season opener.
“There is no feeling in the world right now that I can say makes me feel good, or any better, than just getting the win today,” Hill said. “Forget the block. Just win. That’s the biggest part for me. I don’t care how we did it as long as we did.”
His block helped the Titans hold on for a 16-14 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday, snapping a four-game skid. The Titans (2-4) also avoided blowing a lead for a second straight week after making NFL history failing to hold the biggest home lead in the regular season against Cleveland.
“I had that sinking feeling you know just because of what we went through last week I’ll be honest with you,” Titans coach Ken Whisenhunt said. “But Sammie got his big ole mitt up there and tipped it, so I am very happy for Sammie.”
The Jaguars (0-6) came the closest yet to their first win this season despite giving up six sacks and losing two turnovers.
“We definitely wish that we could have gotten a little closer and made it easier on Josh,” Jaguars rookie quarterback Blake Bortles said. “That’s just another thing and a little detail that could possibly help this situation out.”
Here are some things to know about the Titans edging the Jaguars:
NO EXCUSES: Titans safety Michael Griffin sat for more than 20 minutes after the game at his locker still in his uniform pants with a towel over his head. He was upset with himself for not recovering the onside kick, which would have allowed the Titans to kneel down for the win rather than needing Hill’s block. Whisenhunt said Griffin’s right arm was grabbed as the safety went for the ball for the second onside kick the Titans have lost in three games. Griffin wasn’t making any excuses.
“We’ve been making excuses all season,” Griffin said. “There’s no excuses. It was on me. I need to make those plays. I almost cost my team the game. I’m glad for the win for the team, but for myself that’s not good enough.”
BALL SECURITY: Bortles came into the game having been intercepted six times already in his limited playing time. The Jaguars’ rookie quarterback was intercepted only once by the Titans, and it was costly. Blidi Wreh-Wilson picked off Bortles’ pass at the Titans 16 late in the third quarter to end Jacksonville’s only drive in the quarter. The interception was the first of Wreh-Wilson’s career, a nice boost for a second-year cornerback who has struggled as a starter this season and was coming back from a concussion.
COMMUNICATION: This was the first NFL start for Titans left tackle Taylor Lewan, and Tennessee allowed Charlie Whitehurst to be sacked three times and hit far too often. Whisenhunt noted they went through the game without a penalty on Lewan but said communication issues led to protection problems. The Titans coach said that happens when integrating a new player into the line.
“We don’t want those sacks don’t get me wrong,” Whisenhunt said. “We’ll get it fixed.”
MAYDAY: The drill is called Mayday where a team has no timeout forcing the field goal unit to scramble out, line up and attempt a kick within the play clock. Bradley says the Jaguars usually need 17 seconds to execute, so he didn’t want to risk another play on third-and-2 to get closer with no timeouts remaining. So he sent Scobee out for a 55-yard field goal.
“I felt really confident,” Bradley said of the distance. (Scobee) felt confident on the sideline, and it looked like it was going. It was the right direction and he got enough on it. It was just the height on it.”
HOME SWEET HOME: The Titans finally got their first win in three tries at home this season. It was just their second home win in nine games dating back to last season.
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