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News » Titanic Feast

Titanic Feast

Titanic Feast
DETROIT -- The Tennessee Titans' starters did what a lot of Americans do on Thanksgiving Day.

They enjoyed a big feast and then relaxed and watched some Football, as their backups finished off the woeful Detroit Lions in a 47-10 rout Thursday at Ford Field.

The Titans (11-1) handed the winless Lions their worst defeat in 69 Thanksgiving Day games.

Tennessee rolled up 456 yards of offense and put the game away early, leading 21-3 after the first quarter and 35-10 at halftime on the way to their largest margin of victory since a 58-14 rout of Cleveland in 1990. It also helped to erase some of the ugliness of their first loss of the season last Sunday against the New York Jets .

"Detroit, they're 0-11. It's not a knock on them, but we expected to win this game," running back LenDale White said. "There was no way coming into this game that we thought we were going to lose.

"It's not being cocky. We just knew that we were the better team. The Jets, it was a hard loss, because we actually feel we're better than them, too. But we took one on the chin. ... There would have been nothing worse than losing to the Jets and then coming out and losing to an 0-11 team. We just came out swinging. We gave them the first punch, and they fell out."

The Lions, now just four losses from the NFL's first 0-16 season, have lost 19 of their last 20 games. On this day, the Titans made sure any thoughts of an upset were forgotten quickly, as they scored on four of their first five possessions and returned an interception for a score after the one drive when Detroit forced a punt.

"We haven't started well the last four weeks," Titans tight end Alge Crumpler said. "It was important for us to just come out and play good Football. I'd never say a loss helps a team, but it ... sure got us refocused really quick."

Rookie running back Chris Johnson scored from 6 yards out on the Titans' first drive after a Lions turnover, and he went 58 yards untouched on the next possession.

The Lions managed to dent the scoreboard with Jason Hanson's 53-yard field goal between the first two Titans scores, but it was a day dominated by the Titans.

The Titans padded their lead when Dave Ball took advantage of a Keith Bulluck blitz and plucked a Daunte Culpepper floater out of the air, going 15 yards for Tennessee's third touchdown of the day and the first of Ball's NFL career.

"I'm just thinking why is this ball coming to me so slowly. It was just hovering, you know," Ball said of his interception.

White added two short touchdown runs before the half to give the Titans a 35-3 lead before the Lions enjoyed their only Thanksgiving highlight as Cliff Avril sacked Kerry Collins, forced and recovered a fumble, returning it to the 2-yard line. Two plays later, Detroit had its only touchdown of the day.

The Titans rolled up 292 yards, with 125 from Johnson and 106 from White.

"You don't ever want to go into a game thinking anything is going to be easy," center Kevin Mawae said. "You go into every game thinking you're going to get everybody's best shot, and that's what we expected from them.

"It's their nationally televised game. They're at home. It's Thanksgiving Day and they've got a lot to prove, and we expected them to give their best. Whether they did it or not, I don't know. We tried to go out there and give ours."

The Titans defense also was up to the task, bouncing back after being gashed four days earlier by the Jets. Except for one 21-yard run from Kevin Smith, the Lions managed only 2 rushing yards.

"We had to show everybody that that loss was behind us, that that wasn't us on Sunday, that this is still a good team and that we're a contender in the postseason," defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth said.

The Titans don't play again until Dec. 7, when they host the Cleveland Browns .

Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: November 30, 2008

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Rien Long Name: Rien Long
Position: DT
Age: 26
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