Indianapolis Colts fans find themselves in a weird spot entering Week 18; they’ll be rooting for the Tennessee Titans. The Colts don’t need Tennessee’s help to make the postseason— Indy can do that on its own by getting a win over the Houston Texans. However, if the Colts win and the Titans defeat the Jacksonville Jaguars, Indianapolis will win its first AFC South title since 2014.
Unfortunately, Tennessee is 5-11 and eliminated from playoff contention, while the Jaguars are 9-7 and fighting for a chance to be in the playoffs. Those circumstances discouraged many Colts fans. Not only has Jacksonville been a better team this season, but there was a belief that the Titans could just mail it in since it’s Week 18 and they don’t have anything on the line.
Fortunately for the Colts, Titans head coach Mike Vrabel put that narrative to bed with some fiery comments in a recent conversation with the media. When asked about the incentives for Tennessee to go out and get a win in Week 18, Vrabel passionately expressed that it sucks to lose. He went on to explain that he doesn’t like losing, regardless of the circumstances, so his team will be ready to go on Sunday.
Titans will be motivated against Jaguars in Week 18
With a coach like Vrabel leading the way, Tennessee will be prepared to play spoiler during the regular season finale. Still, there’s the question of if Tennessee’s level of focus matters at all. This is a team that has only won five games all year. Of their 11 losses, one was to the Jaguars 34-14 back in Week 11.
Jacksonville is a much different team than it was earlier in the year, though. Since that Week 11 win against the Titans, the Jaguars are just 2-4. The Jaguars are also battling injuries, including quarterback Trevor Lawrence who was sidelined in Week 17 with a shoulder injury.
Between health, Jacksonville’s decline, Tennessee being motivated, and the fact that anything can happen in the NFL, the Colts have a chance to end the regular season as AFC South Champions.