Extra MustardSI On CampusFantasyPhoto GalleriesSwimsuitVideoFanNationSI KidsTNT

Training-camp postcard: Titans (cont.)

Posted: Wednesday August 2, 2006 11:54AM; Updated: Monday August 28, 2006 2:00PM
Free E-mail AlertsE-mail ThisPrint ThisSave ThisMost PopularRSS Aggregators

Fantasy Note

After averaging 3.8 yards per carry in 2005, Chris Brown is likely to get the bulk of the carries for the Titans this season.
After averaging 3.8 yards per carry in 2005, Chris Brown is likely to get the bulk of the carries for the Titans this season.

I wish I could give you a good clue about the Tennessee running-back situation, but I think a lot of that is going to depend on the progress, conditioning and play of second-round pick LenDale White. He weighs 227, eight pounds fewer than the Titans forecast him to be, and the hamstring injury that plagued him around the time of the Scouting Combine is gone. But Fisher is set on giving Chris (What a Stupid Trade Request I Made Last Week) Brown first crack at the job, and if he runs well, he should still get 18 to 20 carries a game. My guess is that White will be getting the majority of the carries by November, but he'll have to be significantly better than Brown to do that.

On the Menu

If this is Tuesday, it must be salad. As Elaine Benes used to say, "The Biiiiiig Salad."

Entree: Broiled chicken breast, mixed grilled vegetables, with a salad of romaine, mixed greens, celery, carrots and cherry tomatoes, topped by balsamic vinaigrette. A bit plain, but plain is good, especially when breakfast and dinner are nowhere near this good. Grade: B

Dessert: None, though I looked longingly at p.r. man Robbie Bohren's bowl of Purity ice cream.

Drink: Diet Pepsi. I'd rather it be Coke Zero, but beggars can't be choosers. Grade: C+

Overall: A strong B. You should have seen what I passed up. Looked like the lunch buffet at the Bellagio.

Camp Confidential

Until today, I'd been delinquent in not meeting offensive coordinator Norm Chow, who came from the USC coordinator job to Nashville last year. Walking the 300 yards from the practice field to the gym with him, I wanted to know the real truth about the Matt Leinart-Vince Young story. Did Chow ever walk into GM Floyd Reese's office, pound his fist on the table and scream, "I want Leinart! Trust me on this -- I coached him for three years, and I know everything about him, and he's going to be a great NFL player!"

No, Chow said, and he smiled. "Of course I like Matt,'' he said. 'How could you you not like him? But we had to look at all three quarterbacks and judge them as an organization -- Matt, Vince and Jay Cutler. We went on the road and spent time with all of them. I think Matt's going to be a great pro. I love him. But we felt great about Vince and the things he can do on the football field. I love working with him. It's been great."

I could tell from his tone that he meant it. If the pick was Leinart, he'd have been thrilled. But he's happy to have Young because of his enormous physical gifts. Chow told him after the draft that no, he never demanded that Tennessee pick Leinart.

"What I've told him is, 'Hey, I don't want you to be an athlete who plays quarterback. I want you to be a quarterback with athleticism.' He's picking up things well. What he hasn't figured out yet is that all the bells and whistles the defense throws at you, all the smoke and mirrors, is mostly unimportant. That's the thing we're working on now."

Young has a bit of a groin strain right now. And I don't know how something like that heals when you're practicing twice most days in this Equatorial Zone.