Dave Ball had the best game of his NFL career on Sunday, recording 2.5 sacks in the Tennessee Titans' 26-20 loss.
But the performance went for naught as the Titans collapsed in the final minutes, losing 26-20 to the Denver Broncos.
“The worst way to lose in sports is in the end. Even worse is we lose at the end after we beat ourselves,” Ball said.
Ball had 2.5 of the Titans' six sacks in the game.
BAPTISM BY FIRE: Rookie cornerback Alterraun Verner made his first start in place of injured Jason McCourty on Sunday and seemed to acquit himself well enough.
Verner was targeted often by the Broncos and quarterback Kyle Orton, but responded with three passes defensed and 11 solo tackles.
Asked how many passes he estimated came his way Sunday, the fourth-round pick from UCLA said, “It felt like it was 15 to 20, but maybe it was 11 to 15.”
UP AND DOWN: Rookie receiver Marc Mariani's day ended poorly with the muffed kickoff that bounced in front him at the end of Sunday's game.
But prior to that, Mariani had reason to celebrate, returning a kickoff 98 yards in the third quarter to give the Titans a 17-13 lead on the heels of Matt Prater's 36-yard field goal.
Mariani did keep the ball from his first NFL touchdown and was seen leaving with it in the locker room.
Mariani's kickoff return for a score was the first for the Titans since Derrick Mason nine years ago.
BOOMING IT: After missing a 35-yard kick into the wind in the first quarter, Rob Bironas atoned by nailing a 55-yard field goal with the win on the final play of the first half. Bironas' kick tied the game at 10-all.
NO TIME: The Titans actually held a slight 1:16 advantage in time of possession in the first half, only to be steamrolled in the second half. Tennessee had the ball for just 9:04 in the final two quarters and ran just 20 offensive plays for 46 yards.
In the game, Denver had the ball for 35:18 to just 24:42 for Tennessee.