NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The ankle injury Kenny Britt suffered, and the shoulder injury that knocked out Jared Cook last week against Detroit resulted in both Titans playmakers being listed as questionable for Sunday’s game at Houston.
Britt did not participate in team activities but underwent some indoor training and a few exercises outside Friday.
“I went in the bubble to do whatever I had to do,” Britt said. “I got some work done and I’m happy about it.”
Titans coach Mike Munchak said the team must wait and see how Britt’s ankle is feeling and how much it would affect his mobility Sunday before making a decision on if he will play when the Titans (1-2) visit the Texans (3-0).
Britt said he’s done all the mental preparation and film study this week. He also took a look at the play during which he suffered his injury: a tackle by former Titans linebacker Stephen Tulloch.
“That 55 guy,” Britt said with a little laugh. “He wound up on me, Tulloch. He came from behind and spun and tackled, and my foot got caught. I actually pulled my foot — I felt him landing on it — and I pulled my foot out just in time. That really saved me some weeks (of recovery time). I didn’t know it was him until I watched the film.”
Cook missed practice Wednesday and was limited Thursday and Friday but progressively did more each day and said he feels good about his chances of playing. Cook has 11 catches for 164 yards so far this season that included a difficult catch in traffic that he turned into a 61-yard TD against Detroit.
Munchak said he was also encouraged by the progress that Cook has made in his recovery.
“He’s done what you’d hoped he’d do,” Munchak said. “He practiced yesterday on a limited basis. He came out today feeling fine, better than he was yesterday. He practiced more today. So yeah, we feel good about it going in.
“Again, when it’s not an ankle or a knee or something that affects a receiver or a tight end,” Munchak continued, “like it does Kenny (Britt), when you have to run so much … It’s good to see that he’s heading in the right direction. Kenny is getting better, it’s just a matter of how much he can do on that ankle.”
The Titans involved Craig Stevens more in the passing game after Cook left, and the tight end responded with career highs of five catches for 63 yards and had a sixth catch taken away after a video replay. Munchak credited Stevens earlier in the week for executing even though he was being asked to do things he hadn’t frequently practiced.
“I don’t get all the reps like Cookie does when we do that three-wide, but I was ready, I was prepared,” Stevens said. “I made a few little mistakes out there, but I thought I did OK. Hopefully we’ll have him for the next game.”
TITANS EXPECT EXPERIENCE TO HELP
The Titans have a young defense, but several players have already logged two previous games against the Texans.
“I think the good thing is we’re a young football team, but last year we played them twice,” Munchak said. “These guys have a good feel for how they play and what it’s all about, the D-line does now. Last year it was a little different when you had (Jurrell) Casey and the other linebackers, then you had Casey and (Karl) Klug and guys that hadn’t played. Sen’Derrick (Marks) was playing a new position last year. I think it’s good knowing that we played them twice last year, and they have a good feel for what they’re going to get out there this weekend.”
Strongside linebacker Akeem Ayers said linebackers must avoid getting caught in traffic and staff off blocks to counter Houston’s dual-threat offense. Ayers said he and his 2011 draft classmates become better equipped for the challenge with each game.
“Experience helps out a lot because there are not that many teams that have that style of offense, really, with the boots and the stretch run plays all look the same,” Ayers said. “So going against them the first time, it’s like everything is new, and then you play them the second time and you’ve got a little more experience and you know what to expect. For me, especially, and last year’s (rookies), going into the third game of playing them since we’ve been here, we’re a little more familiar with the offense now. We’ve got a better idea on how to play it and each know what to expect.”
Second-year middle linebacker Colin McCarthy will miss his third consecutive game, Munchak said.
McCarthy suffered an ankle injury in the season-opener and missed practice all week as he continued to recover.
The Titans will continue with the combination of 11-year veteran Will Witherspoon and six-year pro Zac Diles in place of McCarthy.
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TopicsAkeem Ayers, Clarksville, Clarksville Sports Network, Craig Stevens, football, Jared Cook, Kenny Britt, NFL, Tennessee, Tennessee Titans, Titans, Will Witherspoon, Zac Diles