|Titans look to Denver to help run game bounce back|
|Written by Admin|
|Thursday, 15 November 2007 02:22|
The Titans ran for a season-low 62 yards in last week's 28-13 loss to Jacksonville. The running backs combined for 10 net yards on 11 carries, and Vince Young made up the difference with his legs. Not a good combination for a team that controls the clock by running, running, running.
LenDale White, who hurt his left knee in that game and had 12 yards on eight carries, isn't worried.
``We had a lot of opportunities to win the game despite the run game. We didn't get it done. We've got to work on it, get back and get Chow the genius ... going again this week, and we'll be ready to go,'' White said Wednesday of offensive coordinator Norm Chow.
Opponents had been trying all season to stop the Titans from running, often loading up to eight and sometimes nine defenders near the line of scrimmage. Jacksonville finally did it. Still, the Titans rank fourth in the league with 139.8 yards rushing.
In the Titans' favor is the return of Chris Brown after missing the past four games with a high left ankle sprain. Brown felt ready to return last weekend against a Jacksonville defense he ran for 175 yards against in the opener but was deactivated.
``That came down to Coach (Jeff) Fisher's decision. That's what he wanted to do. I had to go out there and live with it,'' Brown said.
His return can only help White, who had three 100-yard rushing performances in Brown's absence but had at least 24 carries in each of those games. Brown is averaging 5.3 yards a carry, and he said he has fresh legs. He played at Colorado in college when he scored six touchdowns against Nebraska.
``That happens once every blue moon so you know, just to get half that would be great,'' Brown said.
Young provided almost all the offense against Jacksonville, throwing for a career-high 257 yards and running for 52. Those passing yards helped raise the Titans from 31st to 29th, and he did throw their first TD pass since Sept. 24.
Asked how close the offense is to clicking as they'd like, Young was frank.
``We've just got to keep working. ... I don't have the slightest idea,'' he said.
Their next opponent might help.
The Titans (6-3) visit Denver (4-5) on Monday night, and the Broncos are next to last in the NFL against the run, allowing 151 yards a game. The Broncos have allowed 200 or more yards rushing three different times this season, including 226 at Indianapolis.
The last time the Titans ran for less than 100 yards was Dec. 17 when they had 41 in a win over the Jaguars. They bounced back with 215 in a win at Buffalo.
Tennessee also runs very well away from home, at least since Fisher took over in 1995. This franchise ranks third in the NFL behind only Denver (136.2) and Pittsburgh (128) with 123.2 yards rushing on the road between 1995 and now.
Brown is eager to remind people of what he can do, and he expects the offense to click back into gear.
``Definitely got to get back on track, just get that confidence back and rolling with this offense ... especially prime-time. Everybody's going to be watching. The only game on. Just make our statement we're a team to be reckoned with,'' Brown said.