Titans keep pace in AFC race . . . barely


Titans keep pace in AFC race . . . barely

INDIANAPOLIS -- The Titans (7-4) got their first win in 10 tries at Lucas Oil Stadium when DeMarco Murray scored on a 1-yard touchdown run with 5:59 left Sunday for a 20-16 come-from-behind win over Indianapolis.

The Titans (7-4) pulled off their first series sweep since 2002. And they did it by rallying from a 10-point third-quarter deficit again - just as they had six weeks earlier against the Colts.

Indy (3-8) has lost three straight home games and five of its last six overall. It is one loss away from having the first losing year in coach Chuck Pagano's six seasons.

Tennessee won despite making only one first down during a 30-minute stretch and playing in chilly conditions after Colts officials opened the roof and the window in the north end zone.

But the defense played well enough to keep the score close.

The Titans sacked Jacoby Brissett eight times; repeatedly stopped the Colts after they had taken a 16-6 lead on Adam Vinatieri's 42-yard field goal in the third quarter; and made the game-changing play when Kevin Byard recovered Marlon Mack's fumble at the Colts 4-yard line late in the period.

An offside penalty against Indy moved the ball to the 2, and Marcus Mariota hooked up with Delanie Walker in the corner of the end zone to cut the deficit to 16-13 with 1:50 left in the third.

Tennessee retook the lead when Murray scored on the Titans eighth consecutive running play on a nine-play, 77-yard drive.

Indy punted on the ensuing possession and never got the ball back.

Mariota was 17 of 25 for 184 yards with one TD and two interceptions. Derrick Henry ran 13 times for 79 yards for the Titans.


Titans: Tennessee ran 28 times for 92 yards. ... The Titans came up one sack short of matching the franchise record, which had been twice previously and most recently in 1971 against the Cincinnati Bengals. ... The Titans had 276 total yards, compared with 254 for the Colts.

ColtsFrank Gore ran 17 times for 62 yards and one touchdown, the 77th of his career to tie Tony Dorsett for No. 22 on the league's career list. ... Tight end Jack Doylehad seven catches for 94 yards. ... The Colts have blown double-digit second-half leads four times this season.


Titans: Receiver Rishard Mathews missed his first game this season with a hamstring injury. Walker, left tackle Taylor Lewan and linebacker Jayon Brown all left briefly but returned. Safety Da'Norris Searcy hurt his ankle in the second half and there was no immediate update on his condition.

Colts: Cornerback Rashaan Melvin left after injuring his hand and did not return after having an X-ray. Starting center Ryan Kelly was held out in the second half because of a concussion.


Titans: Continue their march in the AFC South when they host Houston next Sunday.

Colts: Will try to even the season series at Jacksonville next Sunday.

What are the Patriots getting in Cordarrelle Patterson?

What are the Patriots getting in Cordarrelle Patterson?

The Patriots have made a trade with the Raiders to acquire receiver and special teamer Cordarrelle Patterson, according to a source. The deal, first reported by Pardon My Take, is an interesting one because it lands Patterson with the team that passed on the opportunity to draft him back in 2013. 


Bill Belichick dealt the No. 29 overall pick to the Vikings that year in exchange for four selections, including a second-rounder and a third-rounder. The second-rounder became Jamie Collins, and the third became Logan Ryan. The Patriots also took Josh Boyce with a fourth they received in the trade, and the fourth pick (a seventh) was traded to Tampa Bay in exchange for LeGarrette Blount. The Vikings took Patterson. 

Patterson's career to this point has been a mixed bag. One of the top athletes in the 2013 draft, the Tennessee product never quite panned out as a go-to No. 1 receiver. He has not missed a game in five seasons, but he has never cracked 600 offensive snaps in a single season. The 6-foot-2, 220-pounder has turned himself into more of a gadget receiver as well as one of the game's best special teamers. 

Here's what the Patriots are getting in Patterson . . . 

TOP-TIER SPECIAL TEAMER: Patterson has solidified himself as one of the NFL's best kick-returners. In five seasons, he's ranked as the top returner in terms of average yards per return three times. He's never been outside of the top 10 in the league in that category. Last year he was sixth in the NFL with a 28.3 yards per return average. Patterson has also become a highly-effective gunner on punt units, a role he thrived in once he embraced it, and he has kick coverage experience. Patterson has not been a punt-returner. He has just one punt return under his belt compared to 153 kick returns. Patterson has been named a First-Team All-Pro twice for his work in the kicking game. 

INCONSISTENT RECEIVER: Patterson has never been able to take his explosiveness and translate that into consistent production offensively. He's not thought of as a precise route-runner, and he has a reputation as a "body-catcher." Yet, because he's so dynamic with the ball in his hands, offenses in Oakland and Minnesota have found ways to get the ball in his hands. He'll align in the backfield, take reverses and catch screens just to try to get him the ball in space where he can let his natural abilities take over. If he gets a crease, he can create a chunk play in a blink. 

THE COST: Patterson is in the second year of a two-year deal he signed with the Raiders last offseason. He has a base salary of $3 million and a cap hit of $3.25 million. The Patriots will be sending a fifth-rounder to the Raiders and getting a sixth-rounder back. (As an aside . . . The Patriots have used one fifth-round pick in the last six drafts. It was spent on long-snapper Joe Cardona. Why are they constantly dealing fifths away? Inside the Pylon's Dave Archibald did an interesting piece on that topic about a year and a half ago. The gist is that a) there's a significant drop-off in your chances of finding a star in the fifth compared to the fourth, and b) the talent in the fifth round, by some metrics, hasn't proven to be all that different from the sixth or seventh rounds.) 

THE FIT: Patterson is a relatively low-risk acquisition because of his cap hit (which on the Patriots slots him in between Shea McClellin and Chris Hogan) and because of the draft capital required to nab him. Trading for a player like Patterson as opposed to signing another team's free agent has the added benefit of not impacting the compensatory-pick formula. Patterson also fills a few needs. His abilities as a kick-returner will be more than suitable with last year's primary kick returner for the Patriots, Dion Lewis, out of the mix. What Patterson can do as a gunner and in kick coverage will also be useful with Johnson Bademosi now elsewhere. There's also a chance Matthew Slater plays in a different city in 2017, in which case Patterson's contributions as a gunner and in kick coverage could be critical. With Brandin Cooks, Julian Edelman and Hogan all established in the Patriots offense, Patterson won't be expected to take on a heavy role in the Patriots offense. However, if he can pick up a new system, perhaps he could take on a role as a No. 4 or 5 wideout who benefits from plays designed to get him touches in space. Malcolm Mitchell, Phillip Dorsett and Kenny Britt -- now alongside Patterson -- will all be competing for time in New England's offense. Former Patriots coaching assistant Mike Lombardi seems to believe it's unlikely Patterson contributes offensively


Patriots acquire WR Cordarrelle Patterson in trade with Raiders

Patriots acquire WR Cordarrelle Patterson in trade with Raiders

The Patriots have acquired wide receiver and kick returner Cordarrelle Patterson in a trade with the Raiders, NBC Sports Boston's Phil Perry confirms.

Pardon My Take, a podcast by Barstool Sports, first reported the news.

Ian Rapaport of NFL Network reports the Patriots sent a fifth-round pick to Oakland and received a Raiders' sixth-rounder along with Patterson.

More to come...