McCown guides Jets past Titans in low-scoring affair
Josh McCown made his only drive of the game count Saturday night, when he tossed a 4-yard touchdown pass to Charone Peake in the New York Jets’ 7-3 win over the Tennessee Titans in the preseason opener for both teams at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J.
The 38-year-old McCown, who is the favorite in the Jets’ three-man quarterback competition, started Saturday and was 3-of-4 for 72 yards. The bulk of the yardage came on a 53-yard strike to Robby Anderson that gave New York a first-and-goal situation. McCown and Peake hooked up three plays later.
McCown then gave way to Christian Hackenberg, a 2016 second-round pick who didn’t play a regular-season snap following a disastrous preseason in which he completed just 36.1 percent of his passes. Hackenberg looked a little better Saturday, when he went 18-of-25 for 127 yards while directing the Jets to seven first downs in eight possessions. He ended his night on a down note by losing a fumble with 1:42 remaining in the third quarter.
Bryce Petty, who started four games last season but is a decided underdog this summer, finished out the game by going 2-for-6 for 16 yards.
Hackenberg outperformed Titans’ backup quarterback Alex Tanney, who played the final three quarters but was just 11-of-27 for 132 yards and one interception. Tanney had a 67-yard touchdown pass to Taywan Taylor overturned on review during a drive that eventually ended with a 36-yard field goal by Ryan Succop.
The Jets finished with eight sacks, including seven of Tanney.
Titans starting quarterback Marcus Mariota, playing in a game for the first time since he suffered a broken leg last Dec. 24, went 2-for-3 for 15 yards in two series.
Anderson led all receivers with 71 yards on three catches. Titans rookie Akeem Judd rushed for a game-high 66 yards.
Several projected starters for both teams sat out the game due to injury. Jets running backs Matt Forte (hamstring) and Bilal Powell (neck) and linebacker Lorenzo Mauldin (back) were inactive. The Titans held out running back DeMarco Murray (hamstring), rookie wide receiver Corey Davis (hamstring) and defensive lineman Karl Klug (Achilles).