The Titans could be a dangerous playoff team with Ryan Tannehill

Ryan Tannehill, Tennessee Titans. (Photo by Bobby Ellis/Getty Images)
Ryan Tannehill, Tennessee Titans. (Photo by Bobby Ellis/Getty Images) /

The Tennessee Titans have really come alive with Ryan Tannehill at quarterback. They just beat the Indianapolis Colts and will make noise this December.

The Tennessee Titans have played some marvelous football since Ryan Tannehill took over for Marcus Mariota at quarterback over a month ago. Tennessee improves to 7-5 on the season by knocking off its AFC South nemesis on the road in Lucas Oil Stadium. Two late fourth-quarter touchdowns were the difference, but this Titans team is starting to round into form.

The defense has been this team’s identity under head coach Mike Vrabel since he arrived in Nashville two years ago. It’s almost always been solid. Usually, Tennessee can the football with conviction behind former Heisman Trophy-winning running back. However, quarterback play had been an eyesore for this team for much of the last decade-plus.

While he may not be Steve McNair, what Tannehill is doing under center for the Titans cannot be ignored any longer. The former No. 8 overall pick by the Miami Dolphins back in the 2008 NFL Draft is playing the best football of his career. The two quarterbacks taken ahead of him have either retired (Andrew Luck) or hold a clipboard for a living (Robert Griffin III). Tannehill is thriving.

In Miami, Tannehill was a serviceable, often injured, mobile quarterback who could win you between seven and nine games annually in the AFC East and nothing more. But with a great defense and a reliable running game, he is making Tennessee the toughest out in the AFC South as the weather starts to change. The Titans look like a dangerous playoff team no one wants to play.

No, the Titans are not going to win a barn-burner against an offensive-minded team like the Kansas City Chiefs if they were to meet again in January. However, this team is more than capable of beating any team they come across in January should they play their brand of football. If Tennessee does enough to qualify, they can go as far as Tannehill will take them.

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The guy has gone 5-1 in his six games as the Titans starter. His accuracy and willingness to throw the ball down the field, as well as his mobility, have made him one of the best quarterbacks in football for the last month or so. We are seeing him at his peak. This is what he always could have been while with the Dolphins. Now, he’s straight killing it in Nashville. Good for him. He’s earned it.