HOUSTON — Derrick Henry and the defense made sure the Tennessee Titans didn’t need much from quarterback Malik Willis in his first career start.
The Titans won their fifth straight game Sunday, defeating the Houston Texans, 17-10, behind a dominant showing from Henry and a stifling defense that logged eight tackles for loss, three sacks and an interception and held the Texans to 161 total yards.
Henry rushed for 219 yards, a season-high, with two touchdowns. With Henry and spell back Dontrell Hilliard rolling, the Titans (5-2, 3-0 AFC South) barely asked anything of Willis, who attempted only one pass in the second half and finished 6-for-10 with 55 passing yards and an interception.
The Texans offense couldn’t find any success in either phase. Titans defensive linemen Jeffery Simmons, Teair Tart and Bud Dupree combined for eight tackles, four tackles for loss and two sacks, and cornerback Kristian Fulton finished with an interception and two pass breakups.
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How Malik Willis fared
The offense started slow as Henry took time to get started, and Willis wasn’t able to help much. Willis took a sack on his only dropback on his first possession; the Titans went three-and-out on their second drive; and Willis was intercepted on an errant throw over the middle on his third possession. The rookie, who started for injured quarterback Ryan Tannehill, missed a wide-open receiver down the sideline two plays before Henry’s first touchdown.
Once Henry settled in and the defense proved it could contain the Texans’ offense, the Titans didn’t stress Willis much further. He didn’t throw a pass in the third quarter, and his first attempt in the fourth quarter was a throwaway under pressure. He didn’t even get to test his legs much, as the Texans held the dual-threat quarterback to 13 yards on four carries.
Defense stands up
The Texans’ scored only twice Sunday. The first score came after…
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Author : USA TODAY Sports
Publish date : 2022-10-30 23:52:23
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