New Orleans Saints -

New Orleans Saints - (
-   Saints (
-   -   Titans Defense hurting (

BillyCarpenter1 09-18-2003 07:43 AM

Titans Defense hurting,00.html

NASHVILLE - Rookie defensive tackle Rien Long took just about every snap in practice for the Tennessee Titans on Wednesday. He needs to get as much work as he can between now and Sunday.

The fourth-round draft pick and last year's Outland Trophy winner has played only one snap in a regular season game and was deactivated last weekend. But Long will be playing as much as possible against New Orleans (1-1) on Sunday because of a partially separated elbow by tackle Albert Haynesworth.

"He's going to have to do the right things," coach Jeff Fisher said Wednesday.

"He's playing against an extremely talented offensive line, not only talented but they're going to take you down and take you down hard. We need him to stay on his feet, push the pile and make plays for us."

The Titans (1-1) came into the season with little experience at defensive tackle other than Robaire Smith, who now has started four games in his career, counting the first two this season. Haynesworth has started five, but he may be out at least two weeks after hurting his elbow on the first defensive play of a 33-7 loss at Indianapolis.

Backup tackle James Atkins practiced Wednesday, but he has a sore shoulder and is listed as questionable. Even with Long playing, the Titans likely will have to slide end Kevin Carter inside to tackle on more than just passing downs.

Carter did that against the Colts last week. He said he's ready to do whatever the Titans need out of him.

"I think everybody knows I'm fairly unselfish when it comes to what my job description is on this team,'' Carter said. "Obviously losing Albert is going to be a huge blow to us. We're going to be thin on the inside."

New Orleans coach Jim Haslett thinks the Titans' defensive line is a good unit that loses nothing when Carter moves inside to tackle.

"And it's nice to have the ability to put another heck of a pass rusher inside at tackle and put (Carlos) Hall and Jevon (Kearse) outside. So to me that's another plus and that he would be willing to do that and does it pretty well," Haslett said.

Smith said the entire defense, not just the line, will be tested by a Saints offense that features Pro Bowl running back Duce McAllister, who led the NFC in rushing last season with 1,388 yards. Quarterback Aaron Brooks is the kind of scrambling quarterback that has hurt this team in the past.

But Smith expects Long to be ready for the challenge.

"He knows from the attitude and swagger going around that he's got to step up," Smith said.

McNair update: Titans quarterback Steve McNair tried to throw and take part in practice Wednesday, but pain from a dislocated finger on his throwing hand made him stop.

McNair threw during individual drills and early in a passing drill, but he had to stop because of discomfort in the finger he dislocated last week against Indianapolis.

"He just couldn't throw," Fisher said. "It was still swollen and sore. He threw a little bit at the beginning of practice, but we feel like he should be able to do some things (today)."

BlackandBlue 09-18-2003 08:09 AM

Titans Defense hurting
Think Deuce will hit 100 yards this game?

BrooksMustGo 09-18-2003 08:14 AM

Titans Defense hurting
I don\'t think Rien Long is anything special and Calmus isn\'t anywhere near as fast as Duece.

I think Duece may have a really big game, I\'m almost predicting kind of a shootout.

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:07 AM.

Copyright 1997 - 2018 -