Buccaneers @ Titans
Final Score: Titans 13, Buccaneers 3
Writer: Chuck Steele (@ChuckSteele_T2T on Twitter)
The Tennessee Titans took on the visiting Tampa Bay Buccaneers. This was one of our more lackluster offensive games of the week with the defenses showing strong. With a predominantly game of backups, there were a few names on display to keep an eye from both sides, with questions ranging from who’s backing up Tom Brady, is Leonard Fournette back in game shape, and will Malik Willis‘ athleticism be on display again? Read on to find out the answers to these questions and more.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
| Preseason Week 1 |
Kyle Trask: 11/24, 105 yards, INT, Fumble
Blaine Gabbert: 3/5, 13 yards
With the GOAT, Tom Brady, still taking time away, who most likely wouldn’t have played anyway, Blaine Gabbert got to lead the first two series. Both resulted in stalled drives. With only 3 completions, Gabbert only managed 13 yards with short passes and a pass that went to Leonard Fournette.
The rest was all Kyle Trask. After a solid performance last week, Trask simmered down a bit this week. He made some nice throws, being able to make a few in the face of pressure but showed his inexperience at times. His biggest miscue came on a pass when a defender hit his hand in the middle of a throw which led to an easy interception. He also had another pass that should have been picked off in the 3rd quarter but was dropped. He did have a fumble when the defender knocked the ball away, but Trask was able to locate the ball and fall on top of it. With no scores this week, the QBs of the Buccaneers will look to score more points next week when they take on the Indianapolis Colts.
Ke’Shawn Vaughn: 10 carries, 54 yards
Leonard Fournette: 5 carry, 20 yards | 2 targets, 2 receptions, 6 yards
Rachaad White: 6 carries, 19 yards | 1 target, 1 reception, 16 yards
Patrick Laird: 1 carry | 1 target, 1 reception, 1 yard
We all heard the reports and saw the pictures in camp with Leonard Fournette and how he’s gained weight, but tonight Lenny got the start and showed he shed the weight, and some tackles. He played a few drives and showed good promise, pulling off some strong runs and getting involved with the passing game like how he did last year.
Rookie Rachaad White and second-year RB Ke’Shawn Vaughn came rotating in after Fournette. White didn’t do too much with his rushes, only mustering 19 yards on six carries, but he showed his ability to catch out of the backfield with a nice 16-yard catch and run.
The most effective runner was Vaughn, who showed strong runs when he had the chance, at times looking like the best running back on the night. Hitting the holes strong, Vaughn was able to dance with 5.4 yards per carry, finishing with 54 on the night.
Wide Receiver/ Tight End
Deven Thompkins: 2 targets, 2 reception, 38 yards
Tyler Johnson: 2 targets, 2 receptions, 24 yards
Scott Miller: 3 targets, 1 reception, 15 yards
Jerreth Sterns: 4 targets, 2 receptions, 13 yards
Kyle Rudolph: 3 targets, 1 reception, 3 yards
With only 118 passing yards in this game, there wasn’t much to go around without Brady leading the way. No one on the team had more than 2 receptions in the game, with Deven Thompkins leading the way with 38 yards. He did catch a beautifully thrown deep ball, running downfield and making the sideline catch. He has been making a case to earn a spot with Tampa’s starting studs at wideout. Tyler Johnson came in behind Thompkins for 2 catches and 24 yards.
| Preseason Week 1 |
Malik Willis: 7/17, 80 yards, TD | 5 carries, 42 yards
Logan Woodside: 7/11, 56 yards, INT | 4 carries, 10 yards
Malik Willis got the start for the Titans, and he flashed the reasons why the Titans drafted him. Facing pressure through the first half, Willis showed off what makes him a valuable threat: his legs. Facing pressure, Willis was able to extend countless plays, avoid more sacks than could have been, and pick up extra yardage. Making defenders miss, he was able to either make the throw or keep it himself, turning 5 carries into 42 yards. He made a nice connection for six yards with fellow rookie Tight End, Chigoziem Okonkwo, for the game’s only touchdown on a pass that came out like a rocket.
Logan Woodside got the rest of the snaps but did nothing exciting. The only “highlight” was his lone interception, attempting to throw a deep ball early in the 4th quarter by the Buccaneers.
Hassan Haskins: 12 carries, 39 yards | 2 targets, 2 receptions, 8 yards
Julius Chestnut: 10 carry, 35 yards | 3 targets, 2 receptions, 10 yards
Ryan Stonehouse: 1 carry, 9 yards
Dontrell Hilliard: 1 carry, 3 yards
Hassan Haskins saw the nod at running back, with King Henry having the day off. The rookie showed confidence at times, having some decent runs but he didn’t have much offensive line help. With a dozen carries, Haskins was able to only turn out 39 yards, while contributing two catches for eight yards. It was almost identical for Julius Chestnut, who was able to get 10 carries in this one for 35 yards. Neither back had any touchdowns.
Wide Receiver/ Tight End
Reggie Roberson Jr: 5 targets, 4 reception, 47 yards
Dez Fitzpatrick: 2 targets, 2 receptions, 29 yards
Nick Westbrook: 2 targets, 1 reception, 21 yards
Kyle Philips: 4 targets, 1 reception, 11 yards
Chigoziem Okonkwo: 2 targets, 1 reception, 6 yards, TD
Treylon Burks: 3 targets, 1 reception, 4 yards
Reggie Roberson Jr. seemed to be today’s favorite wideout being the only to reach four receptions and 47 yards in the game. Dez Fitzpatrick, fighting for a roster spot, contributed two catches and 24 yards in the one. The longest reception of the day for the Titans came on Nick Westbrook‘s lone catch, for 21 yards. Chigoziem Okonkwo scored the game’s only touchdown today for either team on a 6-yard rocket pass from rookie QB Malik Willis. First round rookie, Treylon Burks only recorded one reception for four yards.