|Young, White, Brown triple threat in backfield together|
|Written by Admin|
|Thursday, 04 October 2007 11:31|
The Tennessee Titans are averaging 173.3 yards rushing per game thanks to the combination of LenDale White and Chris Brown with Vince Young picking his spots to take off. Then occasionally, the Titans will put both White and Brown in the backfield with Young.
Now who do you worry about most?
``It's a triple threat,'' White said of the offensive combination. ``When you have Vince back there, Vince and running backs, what is he going to do now? Fake the pass? You want to run the ball? Check out of that. There are so many things you have to be prepared to stop, and I've seen it before.''
He sure did.
White used to line up in the Southern California backfield with fellow tailback Reggie Bush in a package called ``Pony.'' That's what offensive coordinator Norm Chow still calls it with the Titans, but it's fair to say Young is a bigger rushing threat than White's college quarterback, Matt Leinart.
Young set a rookie quarterback record by rushing for 552 yards last season.
Atlanta coach Bobby Petrino, who must slow down the Titans (2-1) on Sunday, said he wishes he could do that by focusing only on Young. He said the Titans are doing a good job with their offensive front and White and Brown, who have combined for 92 carries for 427 yards.
Petrino said the tricky part is Young working hard to be a pocket passer.
``He really hasn't taken off to run as much as he did a year ago. It's certainly a concern when he does do that. I think they have settled into running the ball and playing physical,'' Petrino said.
Young has run 21 times for 96 yards through three games, numbers inflated by his 11 carries in the season opening win at Jacksonville when the Titans ran for 282 yards. He's averaging 4.6 yards per carry, with only one touchdown, compared to a 6.7-yard average with seven TDs last season.
But Young knows his constant threat to run opens up lanes for White and Brown by forcing defenses to pay attention to him.
``It's a big threat because we've got two good running backs in the back field as well as myself,'' Young said. ``Then we've got good receivers on the outside. So the defenses don't know what to do. Even though they're in their call, they've still got to watch out for us guys in the backfield as well as our receivers.''
How well the Titans would be able to run this season was a big question after team officials cut Travis Henry in March, refusing to pay an $8.3 million option even though he ran for 1,211 yards last season. The Titans finished fifth in the NFL in yards rushing, averaging 138.4.
The Titans turned to White, the 45th pick overall in the 2006 draft, to pick up the load. They also brought back veteran Chris Brown on a one-year deal.
Brown has 42 carries for 247 yards, while White has 50 carries for 180 yards. They now rank second in the NFL with the same starting offensive line they had last year - center Kevin Mawae, tackles Michael Roos and David Stewart and guards Benji Olson and Jacob Bell.
``We heard all the talk about what we weren't going to be and what we couldn't do. All that time we were sitting here knowing what we could do,'' White said.
``We don't want nobody to take it the wrong way as far as being cocky, but with the five offensive linemen we have and with (fullback) Ahmard Hall and Vince Young, the sky is the limit for us.''