Coach Mike Mularkey referred to the team’s Week 17 game against the Jaguars as a “playoff situation” since the Titans needed a win to advance to the postseason and said the last two weeks have shown the Titans they can “win anywhere against anybody, anytime.” Safety Kevin Byard also referred to the Jaguars and a frequent punchline for Titans players while talking about how he’s not daunted by the history of his opponents.
The Patriots may have a lot more playoff experience than the Titans and they may be hosting Saturday night’s game between the two teams, but the Titans are doing their best to show they aren’t intimidated by the task in front of them this week.
“It’s a playoff game, so it’s not like it’s the preseason where I can go out there, ‘Oh, it’s Brady,’ and I’m chillin,” Byard said, via the Tennessean. “This is a playoff game. So I don’t really care if it was Joe Montana. You know what I’m saying? I’m trying to go out there and win the game. I want to make him look like Blake Bortles if I can and try to catch a couple picks. Tom Brady is a great quarterback, but it’s a playoff game. I’m not really looking at it like that.”
Byard, who was named a first team All-Pro last week, intercepted Bortles twice in Tennessee’s Week 17 win. Expecting the same against Brady is probably a stretch, but there’s not much value to resigning yourself to a negative outcome ahead of the game.