NASHVILLE, Tenn. — A swift search can yield viral footage of Tennessee Titans running back Derrick Henry from his Yulee Significant School days, running by way of defenders like the Remarkable Hulk plowing as a result of lousy men.
Even with rushing for much more yards (12,124) than any other large university soccer player to that stage, Henry remembers anything most folks would want to ignore.
“I nevertheless get motivated from things back again in significant school,” Henry claimed. “They claimed I wouldn’t make it this significantly at this position. Usually, guys who are big and engage in functioning back again in higher faculty change into edge rushers or get put on protection.”
But not the 6-foot-3, 247 pound Henry.
That is what tends to make 28-yr-previous so wonderful. He is normally looking for a thing to give him that excess inspiration.
It’s also a huge purpose he has created a tremendous comeback from a Jones fracture in his correct foot that prompted him to miss out on the final nine common-season games final year.
Henry was top the NFL with 937 hurrying yards when he experienced the personal injury in a 7 days 8 street win around the Indianapolis Colts. He designed it again for the divisional playoff reduction to the Cincinnati Bengals — when he rushed for 62 yards on 20 carries.
Entering the period, there have been uncertainties that Henry could return to his league-main variety. And Henry, who received the dashing title in 2019 (1,540 yards) and 2020 (2,027 yards), usually doesn’t trouble with outside noise.
But this time it was diverse, as Henry claimed to training camp with a chip on his shoulder.
“Somebody could encourage me and would not even know it,” Henry mentioned at the commence of camp. “The doubters, what ever they want to be, I am unquestionably inspired. I’m prepared to go. So we going to see.”
Henry and the Titans (6-3) will get their upcoming exam on the street versus the Environmentally friendly Bay Packers (4-6) on Thursday (8:15 p.m. ET, Key Video clip) at Lambeau Field.
If Henry can have the dashing good results other individuals have versus the Packers’ defense, whose 140.6 yards allowed per game on the floor ranks 27th, it could assistance the AFC South-primary Titans get their seventh out of the past 8 games.
“You just don’t come across fellas that are that significant and that fast, and if he receives heading, it truly is heading to be a extended day,” claimed Packers mentor Matt LaFleur, who worked with Henry as the Titans offensive coordinator in 2018 before getting in excess of in Green Bay in 2019. “Derrick is just one of a type. He is a man that can don you down, and a good deal of instances. he receives stronger as the game goes on.”
Given the success Henry has created this time, he should have old-university hip-hop artist Kool Moe Dee’s “How Ya Like Me Now” playing any time he requires the area.
Regardless of a slow start out, the place Henry rushed for 107 yards in the Titans’ -2 begin to open the period, Henry’s 923 full dashing yards are next to New York Giants jogging back Saquon Barkley’s 931 heading into Week 11, and his 9 dashing touchdowns are tied for 2nd with Jamaal Williams behind Nick Chubb’s 11.
Henry turned again the clock in 7 days 8 when he rushed for 219 yards versus the Houston Texans. It was the fourth consecutive video game in which he rushed for 200 or a lot more yards against Houston, placing an NFL history for most 200-property speeding games by just one participant in opposition to a single team.
The Houston recreation was a traditional significant-workload overall performance by Henry. Veteran quarterback Ryan Tannehill wounded his ankle the 7 days prior to, so rookie backup Malik Willis was thrust into the starting off function. Willis attempted 10 passes whilst Henry carried the ball a season-superior 32 times.
Henry by now has 202 carries and is on pace for his third 300-furthermore carry year in the very last 4 several years.
“His bodily stature in all probability allows,” Titans mentor Mike Vrabel explained. “He is effective very tough. He trains tricky and prepares. Mentally he is all set for it as well. He would like it. [Running backs coach] Tony [Dews] does a very good position of seeking to regulate him and where he is at. He is an important aspect of what we do. He is familiar with that likely in. He will get himself all set to go.”
Granted, Henry acquired caught from driving by Texans cornerback Steven Nelson on a 41-yard run, and Kansas City Chiefs defensive backs L’Jarius Sneed and Trent McDuffie tracked him down on a 56-garden operate two weeks in the past.
“In Houston I obtained caught simply because he tapped my foot and that broke my stride,” Henry defined. “In Kansas City, I experienced to re-catch my equilibrium. Me receiving caught, you should not fear about that. I am wonderful.”
It ought to be famous that Henry achieved 20.6 mph, according to NFL Following Gen Stats, on the 56-garden run and 20.1 mph on the 41-yarder.
Last 7 days noticed a different system in a 17-10 acquire in excess of the Denver Broncos, as Tannehill experienced a time high in passing attempts (36), while Henry’s eight carries in the 1st half marked the next time he had 8 or fewer carries in a 50 percent this season.
“The to start with-down production wasn’t [there like it had been] in the preceding months — which brought about us to be in much more throwing situations,” offensive coordinator Todd Downing stated. “Not converting some of individuals early third downs took away from finding into a rhythm in these drives.
“The additional carries you give him in a push, the more powerful he receives. So that’s why it truly is much more crucial to select up these 3rd downs to get him much more possibilities inside people drives.”
Despite the fact that Henry was fueled by the doubters in the offseason, he is not involved with personal figures. His 53 yards hurrying yards in opposition to the Broncos were being the fewest he is attained in a get in the very last four seasons.
“Me participating in at a large amount and acquiring effectiveness influencing the recreation the way I engage in — [whether] I have the ball or I will not have the ball — [it’s about] staying the best teammate I can be,” Henry claimed last week. “It’s about us remaining just tied with each other, obtaining the will and seeking to dominate in each individual match.”
That crew mindset is 1 of the matters that Vrabel enjoys about Henry.
“The variation between this league and our workforce is we got Derrick Henry,” Vrabel stated in his postgame locker speech following beating the Texans.
Each and every workforce is just not fortunate sufficient to have a team player in Yr 7 even now motivating himself in a Marvel superhero-like style with despise from large school.