Found November 28, 2011 on
Fox Sports Tennessee:
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
The Titans might not be ready to make it official just yet, but it is coming.
Rookie middle linebacker Colin McCarthy needs to be the starter for the remainder of the season and beyond.
McCarthy has played the past three games (two starts) for the Titans while Barrett Ruud has nursed a groin injury.
Ruud was signed to a one-year contract just after the lockout ended and was expected to at least hold the position this season while the Titans evaluated what they had in McCarthy, a fourth-round pick from the University of Miami.
Now 11 games into the season, the Titans can be certain that what they have in McCarthy: a playmaker who is seemingly always around the football creating havoc.
There are two types of defensive players -- some who find the football, and others whom the football finds. In that regard, McCarthy is certainly of the former variety.
In three games filling in for Ruud, McCarthy has posted 32 tackles, including five for losses. He forced a fumble Nov. 20 against the Falcons. On Sunday against the Buccaneers, he not only recovered a fumble, but he also picked up his first career interception.
That pickoff of a Josh Freeman pass in the fourth quarter all but put the game into the win column for the Titans, who were nursing a 20-17 lead at the time with just under three minutes to play. He stepped in front of Kellen Winslow, and as he turned, the ball came right to him.
"It's a play we went through in practice," said McCarthy, who has proven to be a quick study in the meeting rooms and has played the past two weeks despite missing practice time with a sore knee. "Early in the game, they kind of did that 10 yards and just sat there, so it was just a matter of time before they did the shake and tried to hit us deep.
"Coach (Jerry) Gray had a great game plan. We went over it this week. When they throw it to you, you've just got to catch it."
It is also telling just what the Titans are doing in that they allow McCarthy to make the defensive calls and also now are keeping him and fellow rookie Akeem Ayers on the field in the nickel package, bringing veteran Will Witherspoon to the sideline in passing situations.
The Titans had hoped to use the 2011 draft to shore up their weak linebacking corps, and it appears that they have done so with the two rookies, both of whom are playing key roles.
Ayers was expected to contribute all along, but the Titans are no doubt pleased that McCarthy has arrived ahead of schedule.
UNDER THE RADAR
The Titans ran for a season-high 202 yards, with Chris Johnson getting 190 of that, all the while using backup Mike Otto in place of injured right tackle Dave Stewart. Otto's only other career start came as an extra tight end when the Titans were short-handed at that position.
BY THE NUMBERS
20 percent -- The Buccaneers' third-down conversion rate Sunday (2-for-10), while the Titans succeeded on 50 percent (7-for-14).
C Eugene Amano got a rarity, catching a deflected pass for a 7-yard gain Sunday. He said it was his first reception since he played tight end as a high school freshman.
QB Matt Hasselbeck completed a left-handed toss to Ahmard Hall for a 10-yard gain while under duress from a pass rush. Hasselbeck had a rough day with two picks, but he did manage to throw the game-winning touchdown pass to Damian Williams on fourth-and-goal at the 2.
RB Chris Johnson ran for 190 yards, easily a season high, on 23 carries. He averaged 8.3 yards per carry after entering the game with a 3.2-yard average. However, he did lose a fumble.
RT David Stewart sat out Sunday's game with a calf injury suffered the previous week against the Falcons.
DE Dave Ball returned after missing two games with a concussion and had a big day. He had two sacks and forced and recovered a fumble on one of them.
TE Jared Cook suffered what looked to be a concussion late in the game when three Bucs hit him on an incomplete pass on the goal line.
CB Tommie Campbell took a handoff from Marc Mariani on a kickoff return and zoomed 84 yards for a touchdown. Campbell later left t
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
The Tennessee Titans executed a perfect kickoff return trick play to score a 87-yard TD against the Bucs on Sunday. Tommy Campbell took the reverse handoff to the house 87-yards. Solid execution by the Titans special teams.
Click here to view the embedded video.
via Business Insider
Link to original article: Titans Score on a 87-Yard Trick Play [Video]
Article found on: Cosby Sweaters
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Chris Johnson ran for a season-high 190 yards, and Matt Hasselbeck threw a 2-yard touchdown pass to Damian Williams on fourth-and-2 with 3:01 left and the Tennessee Titans beat the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 23-17 Sunday.
The Titans (6-5) forced five turnovers and overcame four turnovers of their own. The Bucs outscored them 14-3 off mistakes even though Tennessee...
The Tennessee Titans have been written off by many this season after winning only twice in their last six games before taking on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday. However, given the circumstances which unfolded on Sunday, the Tennessee Titans have to be considered right in the mix for the AFC South division title.
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Chris Johnson may quiet the boos and critics for at least a few days, and the Tennessee Titans keep hanging around in the playoff chase.
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Johnson ran for a season-high 190 yards, and Matt Hasselbeck threw a 2-yard touchdown pass to Damian Williams on fourth-and-2 with 3:01 left and the Titans beat the Tampa Bay Buccaneers...
Titans RB Chris Johnson had run for 4,598 yards in his three previous seasons before the start of 2011.
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Well, wins don't have to be particularly pretty to count.The Tennessee Titans came back to beat the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 23-17 today at LP Field in what was a pretty ugly, mistake-filled game. The Bucs got on the board first, chunking their way down the field but not making it in the red zone for a field goal, but the Titans took advantage of the kickoff return. Marc Mariani...
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Full story at Bob's Blitz ~ http://www.bobsblitz.com
Chris Johnson may quiet the boos and critics for at least a few days, and the Tennessee Titans keep hanging around in the playoff chase. No matter how ugly it may look. Johnson ran for a season-high 190 yards, and Matt Hasselbeck threw a 2-yard touchdown pass to Damian Williams on fourth-and-2 with 3:01 left and the Titans beat the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 23-17 Sunday.
It was wet and sloppy with nine turnovers between the two teams but to the Tennessee Titans, who needed a victory to boost their sagging playoff hopes, Sunday's 23-17 win over Tampa Bay looks like a thing of beauty in the standings. The victory improved the Titans to 6-5 on the season, thanks in large part to Chris Johnson's 190 yards rushing on 23 carries. The Titans did...
Chris Johnson ran for a season-high 190 yards and Damian Williams caught a go-ahead, two-yard touchdown pass late in the fourth quarter as the Tennessee Titans defeated the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 23-17, in a wild game that saw nine turnovers.