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What The Titans Said Following Their 20-17 Loss To The Seahawks

Interviews, transcripts, and press conferences from the Seahawks' Week 16 win over the Titans at Nissan Stadium.


Featuring postgame quotes from the following:


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Head Coach Mike Vrabel

I know it's disappointing anytime you lose, but when it happens in a one-score game as it has a couple of times this year, is it more frustrating?

No. It's always frustrating when you lose. It comes down to a handful of plays just like we saw today whether it's us making one, us not making one, them making one, a penalty here. That's what it comes down to, and we've seen that. There'll be a lot of good plays in there, and unfortunately, there's just some plays there that ended up getting (you) beat in a close game.

What did you talk to them about in the locker room?

Just being appreciative of the people that they're going to go home to and talk to here in the next day or two, because they're really the ones that have supported us and allow us to do what we do and, win or lose, support us. I think that's important. As difficult as it may be after losing a football game, is trying to appreciate the people that have helped us get here and have supported us.

Was Ryan Tannehill just trying to extend those plays he got sacked on?

I don't know, you'd have to ask Ryan (Tannehill). I don't know. Certainly, would not—those sacks are tough to overcome in two-minute. We talk to our defense about the sacks really make it difficult, especially when you have to use your timeouts. So, we got to make sure that we try to get rid of it, and we try to get open quicker, and we try to protect a little bit longer.

How do you feel your line played overall?

There's some good things and some things and plays we'd like to have back. But all-in-all, I thought we were battling, we were competing. Sometimes that's just not enough.

As many people as you brought in that hadn't even been with team, how much of a victory is it (in that regard)?

Zero. There are no moral victories in life. There are no moral victories in professional football. I thank the staff. I thank the players. But again, we strive for much more than that. That's plain and simple. That's the mindset that we must have to get back out of this thing and find a way to win next week.

Getting the run game going today, especially early. How much did that help your offense?

Well, I mean—tried to open up. We weren't able to hit any play-passes, which was unfortunate. But it was good to get the run game going. That was something that we focused on and talked about. I thought guys did a nice job. Could have been better, could always be better. But it was good to see. We just need to have—to be able to complement that run game and didn't have that today.

What happened on the delay of game that came after the timeout?

Operation, I guess, just coming out of the huddle or getting guys lined up. Had some moving parts throughout the game. Guys go down, guys get evaluated. They don't let me call two in a row, so.

What'd you think of Ryan Tannehill's game after being out for a long time?

Like everybody else's not good enough to win today, including me and everybody else. We have to prepare as a starter every week. Every player that's here has to prepare as a starter at every position, more now than ever. So, we'll see how that goes.

Will he (Ryan Tannehill) continue to be the starter moving forward?

I'm not ready to answer that.

On DK Metcalf's touchdown, did the officials ever make a call?

No. They just stood around and looked at each other, and then eventually blew the whistle, and then decided that it was incomplete, forcing Pete (Carroll) to challenge.

QB Ryan Tannehill

How was it losing another close game like that today?

It's brutal. You battle, you keep yourself in the game, find a way to take a lead late. They got the lead, and we didn't do enough to score. So, yes, you're going to have guys out there battling, guys fought through a lot of injuries, guys that didn't practice all week out putting their body on the line battling through the game. Guys stepped up for us that hadn't played much of a role for us throughout the year and stepped up today and played a lot of quality snaps for us. Proud of the guys and the way we battled, but we just came up a few plays short and got to find a way to make those tough plays.

The two sacks on the last series, are you just trying to hang in as absolutely long as you can to find something downfield or what's the thought process there?

Yeah. I mean we've got to cover some ground there, right? So, you can't throw the ball to checkdowns and expect to get the 40 yards we needed to be able to take a swing at it. So yeah, we had long developing routes. We were trying to push the ball downfield and didn't have time to get it off.

How does it feel, after not having played since October, as far as the flow of the game and being on the same page as the guys?

Yeah, definitely had to get back into the flow a little bit. It'd obviously been a while, but it felt good to be back out there. Yeah, I felt like once we settled in a little bit, it felt good.

You mentioned on those two sacks Ryan (Tannehill), is it a narrow line between holding the ball and looking for the receivers down field as opposed to just getting rid of it and throwing it away?

Yeah, it's a super fine line, right? Because a lot of times you're able to hit those downfield throws at the last second. Get the ball off at the last second, right? You get the backer to hold, or the safety to run, whatever the case may be and get the ball off at the last second. Those are going to be tight windows downfield, and they know the ball is going downfield. It's a tough situation but it takes a little time for those things to develop`.

You guys were able to reestablish Derrick (Henry) in the run game today, how disappointing is it to not be able to take advantage of that?

Yeah, it's tough. We did a lot of good things. The run game was great. The guys battled up front. Derrick (Henry) got it going, had a lot of quality runs for us. Tyjae (Spears) made some huge plays for us as well. So, did some good things there but didn't score enough points.

*You had a couple of big runs and rolled out a decent amount. How did you feel mobility wise? *

Oh, I felt great. It makes all the difference in the world when you're not on a blown ankle and trying to make it work. I felt good physically.

Ryan (Tannehill) after the last touchdown, you shared a moment with Derrick (Henry). What was that like and have you started to have any nostalgia at all in the last few weeks?

No, not yet. We've had a lot of cool moments together but that wasn't a nostalgic moment so to say. But enjoy obviously every time I get to share the field with Derrick (Henry). We have a lot of fun together. Made a lot of plays and won a lot of games. He's a fun player to watch, he's a fun player to call a teammate, and he makes a lot of plays for us.

Is that what you told him in that moment? You kind of grabbed him and talked to him for a second.

No, I was just talking about, I thought he may have had a knee down right as he dove into the end zone. So, it wasn't a nostalgic moment at all. I said, 'Hey just be ready we may be on the one-inch line. I wasn't sure if your knee was down.' As I turned back, it looked like he kind of dived, and it was close as the knee hit. But once, obviously they reviewed it, and it was good.

*(Are you) impressed by his (Derrick Henry's) throw? He seems to have a pretty good percentage. *

Yeah. He's got a good thing going with that. Obviously great execution, got the great run so everyone bit off, was able to execute the throw.

RB Derick Henry

What were some things that helped at least in the running game today? Things were a little easier to come by than in recent weeks. What went better in that regard?

The line did great job being physical. Guys blocked. I just make my reads, get north and south and try to make something out of it. They did a great job today.

What's been the difference in one score games this year? You guys have always had success and this year it feels a little different?

We're not winning. It is what it is. Not doing enough.

How draining is it? You have had so many of these games where they kind of ended just like this. How do you keep getting up off the matt?

I'm frustrated. We have two games left, try to do our best to win those. Tough one today.

In a day where you ran the ball as effectively as you guys did today is 17 points just an unacceptable number?

17 just wasn't enough to win. We got to be better.

You talk about not doing enough, but sometimes you guy also say you don't want to try to do too much. How do you find the balance there, doing more but not trying to do too much?

Go back to work this week, try to figure it out and be better next Sunday.

How much does this kind of stay with you? Coach told you guys to go home and be grateful for the family and all that with the holiday. Is it kind of easy to shake it and get in that mode or does it stick with you?

If you care, it won't be easy to shake it. So, that's all I can say about it.

DT Marlon Davidson

In your short time here, you've made a little bit of an impact. Do you feel like maybe compared to Atlanta or other places that you're a little bit more comfortable in this defense?

Of course. I mean, they let me spin a little bit. They let me play ball. They let me have fun, let me play like I'm back in college. Here's just so much more different for me. I love the way Coach T (Terrell Williams) teaches me and coaches me. Here I play free. They just tell me play hard. I ain't got nothing to lose here. I have nothing to lose. In Atlanta, I had everything to lose. I was a second-round draft pick, spotlight was on me, everything. So, it's a little bit more pressure than here now. Here I'm just playing free. 

Do you feel that pressure is starting to leave a little bit?

Of course.

OLB Arden Key

You had the Harold Landry III sack, then you knocked them for a loss on the goal line. You gave yourself a couple real chances to win that drive.

Yeah, I mean, we did. But those penalties kill those.

How frustrating is it? All these close losses, double-digit loss season. How much is that wear on you as you go through?

It don't wear on me no more. It's been like that all season. You just try to find ways to stop it. We up and down. Sometimes, we'll close out two-minute. Sometimes we won't. The frustrating part is pretty much over with because we've been doing it all year. Now it's just trying to find a way to make a play. All it is is making the play.

What's the difference between making those plays at critical times and not? Because those are the plays that cost you games.

Yeah, just got to be the best situational football. We've got to win those situations. Football is about situations. We're going to be good all throughout the game and in that one situation that come up, it's going to cost us. So, we just got to be a better situational football team.

(on the defensive communication with many starters out)

I think our main starters who communicate well have been out there, so the communication has picked up, actually, from the guys that haven't been playing. Communication has picked up, but they just make some young mistakes.

TE Chig Okonkwo

A lot of guys got some time on the field who maybe wouldn't normally get there and they kind of held their own. Is the sentiment in the locker room proud of the guys who stepped up today?

That's like our M.O. That's our thing here. When it's your time to step up, you've got to step up and know what to do and do it properly. So that's what we expect out of everybody who's stepping up. It's just a Titan thing.

On your touchdown catch, from Derrick (Henry), did it seem like forever, for the ball to come down?

Yeah, it did. It was up there for a while. I knew I was so wide open. I was like, 'Golly, that thing is hanging up there.' But it was a good play call, a good scheme play, and we went out and executed it.

Your first touchdown catch of the year, how good did that feel?

It felt good, man. I didn't think it would take this long, but at least it happened.

What do you feel like you've been able to stock upon one another over the last few weeks? You've been getting more involved in the offense and today, you got in the endzone.

Probably just confidence. Really just playing with my head up. My confidence in myself, and my abilities. Just remember who I am, and just giving the play back.

With two more games left, how do you approach these last couple of weeks?

Same as the first 15. Go out there, you're a professional athlete. Go out there and hold you own.

LB Azeez Al-Shaair

In every game that we've lost, it's pretty much the same. It's like this, we get the ball, we can't stop them. Maybe they have the ball, and we can stop them and make plays to win, or we get the ball on offense and same thing. The last couple of losses here its heart wrenching for everybody. We put in all the effort we got, it's not about a lack of effort. It's just executing a little bit more, doing a little bit more. Top all the way to the bottom, myself included.

There's a lot of guys in here you met this week. Coach said there's no moral victories, but I don't know if a lot of people expected it to be a one possession game, with the situation you guys were in.

Yeah, I say the same thing literally every week. This is literally the best of the best. There's no level higher than NFL. Everybody who's playing in it, is a part of that group, an elite group. Anybody who's played in it, knows how hard it is. At the end of the day, like this is the best of the best. Every week anything can happen. So, there's no such thing as right. This isn't college, Alabama or whoever. This is the National Football League.

What was his (Mike Vrabel) message to you guys after this?

I mean, pretty much the same things. No moral victories. We already expect to play hard. It's not something that you're like, 'oh I'm proud.' Like obviously, it just sucks. It sucks because you—playing hard is not our issue. Just executing on those crucial, crucial moments of the game. We've got to do a little bit more. Obviously, just talk about making sure you spend time with the families. We appreciate them. Don't take none of your issues home because everybody we go home to have a big smile on their face, excited to see us. So just try to have some gratitude for that and appreciate the people who are support us regardless of whether you win or lose.

What's it say about the character of this team, though? Because a lot of people say, 'Well, they got nothing to play for.' You guys were fighting your butts off for four quarters trying to get a win.

Yeah, we're professionals. So, end of the day, this is my job. If you're having a crappy day at work, nobody really cares. You got to show up and still put that camera in somebody's face. We do the same exact thing. So, I wouldn't expect anything different. I've never been in a place where it was anything different. That's just the standard.

You mentioned the critical plays and what it takes to make those plays in those moments that you guys haven't made the last couple of games. What's the difference between having success and executing on those plays versus not?

Some of it is just different guys. Experience might not see certain plays until it happens in the game and so it's just like whenever that might come up, it's literally been anything you think of top to bottom, just so many different situations in the game that come up. And I just think that it's not trying to be a little bit more dialed in and just kind of like cover everything throughout the week. And I talked to the guys about, you know, Robert Saleh when I was a rookie told me, 'It's one thing being ready, but it's another thing about being prepared.' And so, my message to the guys, just make sure you're prepared. Leave no stone unturned. So, we get here on Sunday, and you can put your best effort forward. And obviously the effort was there, but execution wasn't enough.

OL Andrew Rupcich

It seemed like collectively the offensive line did hold its own. I mean you guys were able to run the ball, which you weren't able to do a week ago. How proud are you of what you guys were able to do up front?

Yeah, it's a big emphasis every week. This team is going to run through the O-line. So, we need to get going, and to get everybody else going. It was an up week, but we still didn't do enough to win.

As far as what you guys were able to do offensively though, were you proud of some of the drives that you were able to put together.  Like the nice scoring drive, right there in the fourth quarter?

Yeah, like I said, they're always nice, really nice to get those really long drives. But the goal is to win in this game. We just need to do more throughout the rest of the game, in all four quarters to win.

How tough is this loss? I mean you guys fought for four quarters and came up short.

I mean, it's always tough. Everybody puts a lot of work in every week, and we want to see each other succeed and come out victorious at the end. But sometimes you just don't roll that way. So, I mean, it's hard. We'll get back to work on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, or whenever we get back in, and just keep going from there.

What does it say about the character of this team, with nothing left to play for, you guys were fighting and clawing for four quarters?

Yeah, there's no doubt. Everybody on this team has high character. They're all going to play for themselves, their team, the name on their back. They're going to do it every single week, day in, day out, no matter what it is. And we're all going to fight to the end. We're going to scratch and claw and try to win games.

You're one of the handful of guys whose name was called today and expected to contribute. I mean, that's kind of the M.O. around here, right? When guys get their numbers called, they are expected to produce?

Yes, it's just taking advantage of opportunities. I've been on practice squad all year. I got called up this week. I got called up earlier in the year. I just try to take advantage of every opportunity I get out on the field because it might be my last, and I want to take advantage of it every time.

CB James Bradberry

C Jason Kelce

S Kevin Byard

Check out some of the best action shots from Week 16 at the Tennessee Titans at Nissan Stadium on December 24, 2023. Game action photos are presented by Washington's Lottery.

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