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News » Tennessee Titans Strategy and Personnel 2008-10-24

Tennessee Titans Strategy and Personnel 2008-10-24

Tennessee Titans Strategy and Personnel 2008-10-24
For years, the Colts have lined up their receivers on each side, Reggie Wayne left and Marvin Harrison right with very little movement or switching.

The Titans are certainly fine with that arrangement, allowing them to put up-and-comer Cortland Finnegan on Wayne, who is more dynamic at this stage of his career than Harrison. That leaves the Titans with ex-Colt Nick Harper on Harrison, in a matchup of savvy veterans.

In some instances, however, the Colts appear to be sticking Wayne in the slot in three-receiver sets. The Titans would probably rather have Finnegan on Wayne as much as possible, but they remain confident in nickel back Vincent Fuller to cover anyone who comes his way, even if the Colts decide to throw them a curve with Wayne inside.


--WR Lavelle Hawkins continues to get extensive work, as the Titans try to get the shifty rookie incorporated more into their offense. Hawkins has the look of a potential playmaker down the line, but still has issues running routes and being in the right spots at times.

--RB LenDale White, fresh off an 80-yard run at Kansas City, has been losing weight since the season started, though neither he nor Jeff Fisher would reveal how much White has lost. White is listed at 235 pounds, and has been involved in added conditioning drills on a frequent basis.

--LB Colin Allred, a valuable special teams member, missed practice with a groin strain Wednesday. He suffered the injury in Sunday's 34-10 win over the Chiefs.

--QB Kerry Collins has been at his best protecting the football, as he has thrown just three interceptions and has been sacked just once in 134 dropbacks thus far.

GAME PLAN: At 6-0, the Titans will try to keep doing what works -- running the football with Chris Johnson and LenDale White, who were a major part of the franchise-record 332 rushing yards against Kansas City last week.

The Colts have been vulnerable to the run this season with Bob Sanders out of the lineup with an ankle injury. They rank 29th against the run, something that will look inviting as Tennessee hopes to have its offensive line dominate and get a lead.

If they can play from ahead early, it will allow the front four, which has had great success rushing the passer this year, to chase Manning while the back seven mixes and matches on coverage.

MATCHUPS TO WATCH: Titans CBs Cortland Finnegan and Nick Harper vs. Colts WRs Reggie Wayne and Marvin Harrison. With the Colts running game struggling with Joseph Addai on the shelf, the passing game has become even more important. Finnegan has emerged as one of the NFL's top cornerbacks this season, and Harper, himself a former Colt, should know all the tricks Indy's receivers will try and use on him. The Colts receivers don't switch sides often, meaning Harper should have Harrison Monday night with Finnegan matched up with Wayne.

Titans LT Michael Roos vs. Colts DE Dwight Freeney. The Titans have done an amazing job keeping Kerry Collins upright with only one sack in 134 dropbacks to throw the football. Roos is developing into a top-notch pass protector, but Freeney, as always, will provide a big test as he has three sacks and 12 quarterback pressures already this year.


--DE Kyle Vanden Bosch missed practice for a second consecutive day because of a groin injury. Vanden Bosch has made 54 straight regular-season starts for the Titans, and coach Jeff Fisher said the Pro Bowl defensive end should get on the practice field by Friday or Saturday.

--DT Tony Brown appears to be further along after missing last week's game against Kansas City. Brown, bothered by an ankle injury, has practiced two straight days this week and appears ready to reclaim his starting role opposite Albert Haynesworth.

--WR Justin Gage has practiced the past two days after missing three weeks and two games because of a knee injury. Gage, sporting a brace on his right knee, isn't 100 percent, but appears to be getting close to playing.

--WR Justin McCareins continues to miss time because of a hamstring problem. He made a bit of progress on Thursday as he ran on the side.

Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: October 24, 2008

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Isaac Snell Name: Isaac Snell
Position: OG
Age: 26
Experience: 4 years
College: North Dakota State
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