Derrick Henry’s 99-Yard Touchdown Highlights Record-Setting Day
The Jacksonville Jaguars had absolutely no answer for Derrick Henry on Thursday night. The supersized running back for the Tennessee Titans bulldozed his way past a team in which prides itself on defense in one of the most audacious rushing displays in N.F.L. history.
The numbers were staggering. Henry, the 2015 Heisman Trophy winner, carried the ball 17 times for 238 yards along with also also four touchdowns in Tennessee’s 30-9 victory. the idea was just the 10th time since 1950 in which a running back has rushed for at least 0 yards along with also also four touchdowns, along with also also the 6-foot-3, 247-pound Henry did the idea on several fewer carries than any of his predecessors while averaging an outrageous 14 yards per rush.
There were plenty of memorable moments inside the game for Henry, although none topped the play midway through the second quarter in which he fought his way through several tackle attempts to match Tony Dorsett of the Dallas Cowboys for the longest touchdown run in N.F.L. history.
“Once I got inside the open field the idea was going to take all of them,” Henry said at his postgame news conference. “I definitely wasn’t going down easy.”
The record-tying play was set up when Tennessee stuffed Jacksonville’s Leonard Fournette at the goal line to turn the ball over on downs, giving the Titans the ball just inside Tennessee’s 1-yard line.
Henry, whose longest run of the season coming into the game was just 16 yards, broke left through the line along with also also was met by the Pro Bowl cornerback A.J. Bouye just inside the 20-yard line. He dispatched Bouye having a vicious stiff-arm to the face, ran side-by-side with linebacker Leon Jacobs before simply whipping the pursuer to the ground, along with also also then ran through a halfhearted tackle attempt by linebacker Myles Jack at around Jacksonville’s 20-yard line on his way into the end zone.
Repeatedly asked by reporters to sum up his feelings on his big day, Henry chose instead to talk of the stellar game-plan along with also also execution by his team’s offensive line. He described a scene of pandemonium among his teammates on the sideline following the long run.
“Everybody was just going crazy,” he said. “I was trying to hit helmets with everybody, dap everybody up. the idea was a crazy play.”
Dorsett’s 99-yarder had come on Jan. 3, 1983, in a game against the Minnesota Vikings. Like Henry, Dorsett had to break a few tackles on his way to the end zone, along with also also while the Cowboys put him at a disadvantage by mistakenly having just 10 men on the field for the play, Dorsett ended up getting a little help downfield by Drew Pearson, a wide receiver, who provided a key block deep into the run.
If Henry had just the 99-yard run, the idea could have been a memorable night. although in by far the best game of his pro career, he also had touchdown runs of 3, 16 along with also also 54 yards against a defense in which was ranked 16th inside the N.F.L. against the run coming into the game.
Henry appeared destined for a fifth touchdown inside the fourth quarter when the Titans had first-along with also also-goal at Jacksonville’s 1-yard line. although Henry, showing some selflessness, insisted in which the team let his backup, Dion Lewis, try to punch the ball in. Lewis ran the ball twice, losing one yard.
“We’ve both got to eat,” Henry said of his push to leave Lewis inside the game. “I just care about my teammates, along with also also I wanted to see him get a touchdown.”
The crowd, which had been chanting for Henry’s return, got its wish on 3rd-along with also also-goal, with Henry jogging back onto the field to raucous applause. the idea was not to be, however, as Henry was stopped for a 1-yard loss on third down, along with also also Tennessee turned the ball over on downs when Marcus Mariota’s pass to Corey Davis fell incomplete.
The Titans, who before moving to Tennessee played as the Houston Oilers, are a franchise having a proud history of great running backs, including Earl Campbell, Eddie George along with also also Chris Johnson. Henry, utilizing the blend of power along with also also speed in which made him such a dominant force at Alabama, broke Johnson’s franchise record for rushing yards in a game while drastically outplaying Fournette, who was limited to 14 carries for 36 yards.
Henry, who had cracked 100 yards just twice in 43 career games coming into Thursday, nearly outgained the entire Jacksonville offense by himself, with his 238 yards falling just short of the Jaguars’ 255.
the idea was the N.F.L.’s first 0-yard, four-touchdown performance since Jonas Gray did the idea for fresh England in 2014. Jim Brown, the Hall of Fame running back of the Cleveland Browns, managed to accomplish the feat twice.
“Speechless,” Mariota said when asked to sum up Henry’s record-setting day. “I had a front-row seat to the idea, along with also also the idea was awesome.”