Tennessee Titans running back Derrick Henry is brilliant in road games. He explains why

Ben Arthur
Nashville Tennessean

If there’s one thing the Tennessee Titans can depend on offensively at the Seattle Seahawks this week, especially after the dud in the season opener, it’s Derrick Henry. 

The Titans star running back has thrived in road games historically. In his last 16 regular-season road contests, dating back to 2019, the two-time reigning rushing champion has rushed for 2,003 yards and 20 rushing touchdowns with an average of 125.2 yards per game in that span, all league highs.

Henry has had at least 100 rushing yards in 11 of those games, including more than 200 yards in three of them.

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So why is Henry so brilliant on the road?

“I think it’s just being locked in,” Henry explained Thursday. “Focused on what we need to do play by play and having the will to want to win each and every rep. Credit to the guys in front of me doing a great job and me just going out there and doing my job.”

Tennessee Titans running back Derrick Henry (22) runs off the field after their 38 to 13 loss against the Arizona Cardinals at Nissan Stadium Sunday, Sept. 12, 2021 in Nashville, Tenn.

The Titans this week will look to establish their run game, the heart of their offense, against the Seahawks after failing to do so against the Cardinals. Tennessee mustered just 86 yards on 22 carries vs. Arizona (3.9 yards per carry). Henry had just 58 yards on 17 attempts (3.4 yards). The rush lanes were never there, largely because of a struggling offensive line. 

Henry said the Week 1 performance wasn’t up to the Titans' standard.

The key against the Seahawks, he added, is finding a way to get into drives. 

“It’s going to be a loud stadium,” Henry said of Seattle’s Lumen Field. “It’s a hostile environment. Just getting into drives, moving the ball down field and then trying to get into the end zone. It’s a tough environment to play in but we just have to stay locked in and with each other and move the ball forward.” 

The Titans have had a knack for responding to bad losses in the Mike Vrabel era (2018-present). Tennessee is 8-2 after double-digit losses under Vrabel. 

Henry said it comes down to the team’s mentality. 

“We don’t want to have that same result,” Henry said. “We know that whenever we don’t play to our standard, we have to play better. You watch the film and you grow from it and come out here and try to get better every day leading to Sunday.”

Ben Arthur covers the Tennessee Titans for The USA TODAY Network. Contact him at barthur@gannett.com and follow him on Twitter at @benyarthur.