NASHVILLE – The Titans defense exchanged punches with the Buffalo Bills on Sunday.
The offense, however, was mostly punchless.
And after Sunday’s loss, they beat themselves up.
“As an offense, we need to get in gear,” left tackle Taylor Lewan said. “For the last, however long I have been here, this has been the story. I think we are all over the, ‘We’re going to be fine.’ We need to get in gear, we need to get going.
“Everyone is upset and everyone is pissed off – Derrick (Henry) is pissed off, Marcus (Mariota) is pissed off, the offensive line is pissed off. We’ll put this on the offensive line — we have to better as an offensive line and that includes myself. We need to get better. We have to be better.”
The Titans lost 14-7 to the Bills in a game when quarterback Marcus Mariota threw for 183 yards but was sacked five times. He’s now been sacked 22 times in five games this season.
On Sunday, Mariota was under pressure several times immediately after taking the snap.
Titans right tackle Jack Conklin agreed with Lewan.
“We knew they were a physical defense and give them credit – it looks like they were more physical than us today. We have to be better,” Conklin said. “The defense played great – we let them down.”
The Titans had their chances.
But time and again, drives stalled in Buffalo territory and ended with missed field goals.
Mariota didn’t blame kicker Cairo Santos, who missed four kicks.
Like other members of the offense, he blamed himself and the entire offensive unit.
“When it comes down to it our defense is playing outstanding, and we just have to play better complementary football,” Mariota said. “We as an offense have to carry our weight and just go score points.
“I know me personally, I look back at maybe what you didn’t do, and what you could have done better. We have to find ways to improve, sustain drives and score touchdowns.”
The Titans had two touchdowns called back because a penalties.
A touchdown run by Henry was wiped out because of a holding penalty on Conklin. A touchdown pass from Mariota to receiver A.J. Brown was negated because it was ruled Mariota had crossed the line of scrimmage before throwing the pass.
Earlier in the game, a long pass from Mariota to tight end Delanie Walker was wiped out because of a holding call on Lewan.
“We lost the game, so that’s pretty much frustrating,” Walker said. “We didn’t execute, had lot of penalties and pretty much took ourselves out of the game.”
Added receiver Corey Davis: “It’s simple: We have to be better as an offense. That’s really what it comes down to. The defense did a good job of getting us a few stops. We have to execute better. A lot of those drives we were juust shooting ourselves in the foot – most of them we were shooting ourselves in the foot.”
It was that kind of day for the Titans, who managed just 14 first downs and 252 yards on offense. Meanwhile, the team had eight penalties for 60 yards.
The Titans have been held to just one touchdown in two of their first five games. Sunday’s performance came against the NFL’s No.2 ranked defense.
“We did leave a lot of points out there, and it was our fault,” Mariota said. “We are going to have to take a look at it and find ways to improve.
“You have to give credit where credit’s due – those guys played great. But we made some mental mistakes and some errors that left a lot of points on the board.”