Fisher was fearful of big play by TB
By: By TERESA M. WALKER, AP Sports Writer
NASHVILLE (AP) — The Tennessee Titans’ streak of not allowing any points in the fourth quarter is over. The fact they allowed a field goal instead of a touchdown doesn’t make it hurt any less.
The Titans tied up the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at 10 with 1:17 left Sunday, then couldn’t stop Jeff Garcia who moved the Bucs 55 yards in seven plays to set up Matt Bryant’s winning field goal with 11 seconds left.
“Anytime you have an opportunity to get your offense back on the field and stop them from advancing the ball, that’s the goal of the defense,” linebacker David Thornton said Monday. “We kind of want it to be on our shoulders. We didn’t get the job done.”
Coach Jeff Fisher credited Garcia for making the key plays after the game and again on Monday.
“All last week, all we talked to the defense about was, ‘Don’t give up the big play.’ They can’t score unless they put a big play in a drive. That’s what happened. Jeff does a great job of moving around, staying alive and getting rid of the football,” Fisher said.
The Titans had allowed Tampa Bay to hold the ball for only 6:45 of the second half.
But the play that hurt the most on that final drive was Garcia scrambling around on third-and-10 before completing a short pass to Ike Hilliard for a 28-yard gain.
“It’s disappointing, but we have to get over it and move on,” Thornton said.
The Titans allowed only 30 yards rushing Sunday, which bumped them up to first in the league against the run and sixth in yards allowed. Not bad for a unit that gave up more yards than anyone else in the NFL in 2006.
TURNOVER TROUBLE: One area the Titans will be working to fix is turnovers. A team that lost five turnovers through the first three games now has eight combined over the past two games. Combined with 10 takeaways, Tennessee is now minus-3 in the takeaway/giveaway ratio.
Coach Jeff Fisher said that helped them let Sunday’s game slip away.
Vince Young was intercepted — his fourth in two games — and he was credited with a fumble on a botched exchange with Chris Brown early in the second quarter.
The Titans had two interceptions erased after Fisher challenged rulings on the field. That still left Young’s pick by Phillip Buchanon, which Fisher didn’t agree with either. Not that he’s planning to complain to the league office because there’s nothing they can do about it now.
“I looked at it very closely, and I felt like that should have been overturned. I thought he was out of bounds. Sometimes the replay philosophy is indisputable visual evidence before you overturn the call. In this case, (Buchanon’s) foot was on the white, so I thought that was good enough,” he said.
“It must not have been enough for him.”
INJURY REPORT: Running back Chris Brown didn’t return to Sunday’s game because of a sore ankle, and defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth hurt his groin trying to stetch out and make a tackle. But both were feeling better Monday. Coach Jeff
“It looked bad on tape. He’s lucky. He’s very, very athletic and flexible, and he can bounce back. He’ll be fine. He’ll practice this week,” Fisher said.
EXTRA POINTS: Justin Gage’s 42-yard catch was the second-longest of his career, and he finished with 82 yards receiving in Tampa Bay — second-highest total of his career. … Roydell Williams matched a career-high with five catches, and Eric Moulds had his best day with Tennessee.