Behind five field goals from Nick Folk and four turnovers from the Titans, the New England Patriots picked up their sixth straight win and move to 8-4 on the year.
After forcing the Titans to a three-and-out in the game’s opening possession, the Patriots found their way into the end-zone on a nine-play drive, that resulted in a four-yard touchdown pass in the back of the end-zone from Mac Jones to Kendrick Bourne on a fade route. Next Gen Stats notes that it’s their third touchdown this season that has less than a 30 percent probability of being completed, with this one having a 28% chance of being a catch.
The Titans followed that up with a 14-play drive that took them into the early part of the second quarter, and they capitalized with a one-yard touchdown pass from Ryan Tannehill to Nick Westbrook-Ikhine. However, the PAT kick from Ryan Bullock was no good.
New England had their drive kickstarted with back-to-back 20-yard passes from Jones to Jakobi Meyers, and with 10 minutes left in the second quarter Nick Folk drilled a 22-yard field goal to take the 10-6 lead.
Bullock continued his rough day with a missed 44-yarder, and Folk made it a seven-point game with a 37-yarder of his own.
Tennessee running back, Dontrell Hillard, then fumbled on the following drive giving Folk a chance for a first-half-ending 53-yard kick. With the chance to tie his career-best — which he made just a week ago on “Thursday Night Football” under the Atlanta dome — Folk missed wide right as the wind was not on his side to end the first half.
Folk did lead off the second half with a 28-yard boot, and the Patriots defense — which had struggled against the run all day even with Tennessee being Derrick Henry-less — grabbed another fumble as D’Onta Foreman fumbled after rushing for 30 yards. The Pats were unable to capitalize and punted, but the Titans were too as they were limited to a three-and-out.
Jones then found Bourne yet again in just the fourth play of the drive for a 41-yard touchdown pass, as Bourne caught it at the 35, juked by a defender, and trotted down the sideline for the score.
Tannehill led the Titans downfield and deep into New England territory, and Tannehill’s pass, after being tipped several times, it found the hands of Patriots cornerback J.C. Jackson in the back of the end-zone for an interception. Folk then booted another field goal, as his lengthy 52-yarder made it 29-13.
In time of desperation, the Titans had to go for it deep in their own territory. Tannehill’s pass to Westbrook-Ikhine was incomplete, and it took just two plays for Damien Harris to put the game out of reach with a 14-yard touchdown run to make it 36-13. Khari Blasingame then fumbled with less than a minute left in the ballgame to make it four turnovers for the Patriots.
- Jones went 23-for-32 through the air and tallied 310 yards, no picks and a pair of touchdowns
- Rhamondre Stevenson had nine carries for 46 yards
- Damien Harris notched 40 yards on 11 carries; 12 yards on one reception
- Meyers led the team in receiving; he had 98 yards on five catches
- Bourne had a strong day, grabbing a pair of touchdowns (as mentioned) and 61 yards across five catches
- Jonnu Smith tallied three catches for 49 yards; one carry for nine yards
- Nelson Agholor had three catches for 20 yards
- Hunter Henry had two receptions for 16 yards
- Jalen Mills, Kyle Dugger, and Jahlani Tavai were the ones who recovered the fumbles
- Ja’Whuan Bentley led the team in tackles (10)
- Kyle Dugger and Davon Godchaux led the team in solo tackles (6)
Nick Folk’s record:
(Photo of Kendrick Bourne by Billie Weiss/Getty Images)