Titans-Broncos Week: Monday Report

TitansInsider.com
Posted Nov 13, 2007


Titans Head Coach Jeff Fisher talks about the loss to the Jags and the next game against the Broncos.

Opening statements

Fisher: “After the staff has had a chance to look at this game and we’ve discussed it with the players, it’s usually the case after a loss where there are some good things that happen in the game. There are a lot of things you can take from the ballgame, and then of course, a lot of things that you need to eliminate and improve upon. That is the case. Nine penalties in the ballgame, six on the line of scrimmage, had nothing to do with the play. The false starts, the defensive offsides are not good. We rushed 11 times for 10 yards, which is a little uncharacteristic of how we’ve been playing in recent weeks. We allowed them to convert three of four fourth downs, defensively. They were three of five overall. Just a fourth-down stop in one of those drives could have been the difference maker. There were a lot of things we looked at, things that can all be corrected. We didn’t play well in all three phases. We’ve corrected things and we’ve moved on. We’re looking forward to this coming week’s challenge. ”

(on if the team doesn’t trust QB Vince Young)

Fisher: “I think everybody’s a little frustrated and disappointed after a loss. I think I’d just characterize that as frustration after a loss. We threw the ball 41 times yesterday. That implies that we trust what he’s doing. I though he played a pretty good ballgame, considering the defense he was up against. The way he ran the football and many of the decisions he made were very, very good decisions. ”

(on if the defense was affected knowing that they would be without DT Albert Haynesworth)

Fisher: “The guys played hard. We were just out of position, we missed some tackles and those kinds of things. But no, they didn’t go in pressing or lacking confidence because one of their teammates was out. They knew they had to go in and somebody had to pick up slack. They did the best they could. ”

(on if Haynesworth and DE Travis LaBoy will be game-time decisions for this week’s game)

Fisher: “We haven’t ruled anybody out for this week’s game at this point. We had a couple knicks in the ballgame – Nick Harper, David Stewart. I would be surprised if both of them practiced Wednesday or Thursday. They will have a chance to get back on the practice field probably on Friday, which is a normal Thursday for us. ”

(on what went in to the decision to deactivate Hayneworth for the game)

Fisher: “It was not much of a discussion. It was apparent that he wasn’t ready. It was all based on the fact that we did not want to subject him to other injury, further risk or losing him for a longer period of time. He was not ready to play because of the hamstring. ”

(on why the Titans struggled in the return game on special teams)

Fisher: “ [Jacksonville] did a nice job of kicking the ball. We didn’t do a good job of timing our wedge up with the catch. We were too far away. Chris (Henry) was moving sideways to catch the ball. We just got outplayed in a couple instances where we didn’t get our blocks set up. ”

(on whether Henry was thinking or stalling too much on kickoff returns)

Fisher: “No. He’s trying to get back to the wedge and read something. I think in each case, we got beat up front and had an unblocked cover guy in the hole. He tried to adjust and there was nowhere to go. Credit [Jacksonville] with a good effort on special teams. ”

(on if WR Chris Davis was inactive because of his recent fumbles)

Fisher: “No. I mentioned that it didn’t have anything to do with that. It was a numbers thing. It involved the injuries at the defensive line. Also, we wanted to bolster our core group of (special) teams players so we kept both Rich (Scanlon) and LeVar (Woods) up. ”

(on whether he will continue to utilize WR Brandon Jones on punt returns)

Fisher: “Yeah, and I could have Chris Davis back as the returner, too. ”

(on whether the field condition had anything to do with the fumbled snap on fourth-and-one)

Fisher: “Often times, in the quarterback sneak situation where you’ve got to get a yard, you’ve got big guys in front of you and you’re going to try to reach a big body. Sometimes the ball doesn’t come all the way up and that was the case. The ball just never got to Vince. It’s just one of those things that happen. ”

(on S Michael Griffin’s tackle on Jacksonville’s fake field goal attempt)

Fisher: “That was a huge play. It was one of the fourth down stops that we did make, which was huge. We anticipated something along the way, but thought it would come more in punt formation than it would out of a field goal formation because the punter is the holder. I think coming out of college, [Jaguars holder Adam Podlesh] was timed under 4.4 (seconds in the 40-yard dash). So we knew he had great speed and we knew it was going to be a matter of time before they tried something to take advantage of his speed. It was a great play by Griff. ”

(on whether RB Chris Brown will play in this week’s game)

Fisher: “He’ll practice this week, yes. ”

(on the health of RB LenDale White)

Fisher: “I would expect him to practice this week. ”

(on if he anticipates any changes in the status of RB Chris Henry’s appeal of his suspension)

Fisher: “This is an issue that they’ve got to sort out. As I said last week, this is an issue between Chris, his agents and the league. ”

(on if the Titans organization has any influence on the decision regarding Henry’s appeal)

Fisher: “Nope. It’s their deal. They’re looking at the situation. Again, it’s their issue with the league. ”

(on the play of MLB Ryan Fowler)

Fisher: “He played well. He was really involved in the run game. He was not the reason some of the runs broke loose. But he played well. He got off blocks and he played well. It was one of those games where [Jacksonville] subbed only on third down. So Ryan was on the field and played a lot more snaps than he ordinarily does. ”

(on why Jacksonville’s run game was so successful)

Fisher: “We had missed tackles. We had guys not getting in their gaps. We were overplaying, anticipating one thing and probably trying to do too much. They had a 30 (yard run), two 15s and a 13. In each one of those cases, we had missed tackles involved. ”

(on how many snaps new DT Demetrin Veal played)

Fisher: “I don’t know off hand. I’m going to guess probably somewhere between 15 to 20. He was effective, knew what to do, lined up. It was a good decision to bring him in and get him involved in the week’s practice because we expected and he expected to play. I thought he did a nice job having only been here for a week. ”

(on how close the Chris Hope play was from being an interception)

Fisher: “You saw it yourself. We all saw it. It was close, but the ball was on the ground. ”

(on consideration of going to a no-huddle offense earlier in the game)

Fisher: “It’s a game-to-game thing. Everybody is different on defense. The things that we were trying to get accomplished early we did not because we couldn’t convert third downs. Our first drive we had an eight or nine-play drive and ended up punting the ball. Then we had three or four three-and-outs. And then the defense couldn’t get the stops and before you blink we’re down 14-0. I didn’t anticipate that high-scoring game. That’s a lot of the reason I elected to take the field goal before the end of the first half. I didn’t anticipate a high-scoring game. I didn’t anticipate them putting together long drives in the second half thinking that if we got back on track, points help. So for Vince to be able to do what he did in the hurry-up situations considering we have only utilized that the time before the end of the half or at the end of a game to catch up, I thought he handled it very well. ”

(on if Young is frustrated about wanting to open up the offense more)

Fisher: “No, I don’t sense any frustration at all. He understands that each week is different. He’s doing what we’re asking him to do. And again, I was pleased with a lot of his work yesterday. I thought he made some real nice throws. ”

(on his decision to kick the field goal prior to the end of the first half rather than taking a shot at the end zone)

Fisher: “I didn’t anticipate a high scoring ballgame. I thought three points was going to be enough to get us back in this ballgame. I anticipated scoring more points. I don’t know if you saw Baltimore yesterday, but they have a very, very experienced quarterback (Steve McNair) under center and he threw an interception right before the half taking shots at the end zone with 20 seconds left, or less than that. You don’t want to go in with a negative play. Points were positive for us, and that’s my decision. My job is to make those decisions and explain to you the best I can why I make those decisions. ”

(on if having a consistent kicker like Rob Bironas makes a decision like that easier)

Fisher: “We have a lot of confidence in Rob. We know it’s a chance to be a very positive play for us. ”

(on the tipped pass off WR Roydell Williams’ hands that turned into an interception)

Fisher: “That was a tough play – good coverage, a little contact when the ball got there. It’s kind of one of those things that happens. ”

(on what the offense needs to do to produce more touchdowns in red zone)

Fisher: “I think you saw some improvement yesterday. We had a touchdown pass at the end called back because of a hold, which I can question. You have to cut the quarterback loose, you have to let him run around, scramble and make plays and tight throws. That’s how you score touchdowns down there most of the time. ”

(on if Justin Gage’s circus catch is one of the better catches he has seen)

Fisher: “Yeah, it was great concentration. We were very close to having two very similar plays because Bo (Scaife) was very close to making that catch as well. ”

(on if Gage will see more playing time going forward)

Fisher: “Yes, we’re going to continue to get him more involved. He’s making a lot of plays for us.”

(on his opinions about ejections for helmet-to-helmet hits)

Fisher: “The commissioner’s office, with good standing, feels in recent weeks there have been some very vicious hits and they want to put a stop to it. Ejections will certainly take care of that. I think they’ll approach it the same way as they have with the flags. We’ve had several instances over the years, one in particular with the Steelers in the playoffs, where you’re called for a helmet-to-helmet hit and you’re penalized, but when you look at it it’s not a helmet-to-helmet hit. There’s going to be the chance that there will be a player ejected for something that was thought was one thing but was not. But it’s important. The players realize it. The league office has placed a very, very high priority on player safety. It’s for their own good. ”

(on if it’s a greater point of emphasis for the Titans)

Fisher: “Yeah, we’ve talked to [the players]. They know. They understand the rules. I think one of them has to do with the (Matt) Schaub hit. And I still to this day have not heard, have not seen it personally, but I heard how it was described to me by a league official and that’s the kind of thing they want to make sure that we avoid. ”

(on if a replay is possible before players are ejected)

Fisher: “No, that does not fall under the replay envelope. ”

(on team’s first down defense)

Fisher: “As I said earlier, we didn’t play like we have been playing in the weeks past. We didn’t win as many downs on first down. We had a number of second-and-longs that ended up being second-and-shorts because we were offsides. When you go into a ballgame and you have anywhere from six to eight, maybe nine third-and-two or lesses and fourth-and-two or lesses in the ballgame, teams typically are going to convert half of those. So the 50 percent conversion rate, they’re going to keep some drives alive, and that’s what happened. We didn’t get the third-and-longs that we would have liked. We started off with a third-and-10. We had a communication problem in the secondary and gave up a screen pass for 10 yards. I think everybody on the sideline and on the defense knew they were going to screen. We had a communication issue. ”

(on if the loss by the Colts Sunday night had Titans players kicking themselves about possibility of being tied for the lead in the AFC South)

Fisher: “No, they’re kicking themselves because we lost the game and didn’t play very well, period. It didn’t have to do with anything else that’s going on around us. ”

(on if a loss can be a positive thing)

Fisher: “Well, you try to take positives out of a loss as best you can, put it in perspective for them, explain to them why it happened just to make sure these types of things don’t happen again. They understand. They’re not happy, especially against a team like Jacksonville, and we got outplayed. They played a good ballgame and we didn’t, and we have to move on from it.”



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