In the event that Kerry Collins has to replace Vince Young as the starter in Houston, the veteran quarterback appears comfortable in leading the Tennessee Titans.
Collins stepped in and finished Sunday’s 13-10 loss at Tampa Bay after Young suffered a strained right quadriceps muscle. Young is “day-to-day” regarding his status for this Sunday’s game against AFC South rival Houston.
Collins, 34, is much more comfortable now than he was after originally signing with the Titans last year and being thrust into the starting role on opening day with only a week to prepare.
That preparation showed when he came off the bench Sunday and went 10 of 20 for 125 yards and led the Titans to their only touchdown drive, one that tied the game with 1:24 to play.
“I was calm,” Collins said. “I tried to lean on the experience that I have. I prepared well this week and I try to prepare well every week just in case. I was just happy I got the call when Vince when down. I just tried to go out and execute the offense. And unfortunately, like I said, we just came up a little bit short.”
The highlight of the drive was Collins’ 42-yard completion to Justin Gage, the biggest play of the day by far for Tennessee’s moribund offense, and one that helped lead to the touchdown score.
“When you get a big play like that, it kind of picks you up and gives you confidence for the next play,” left tackle Michael Roos explained of the completion.
If Collins has to play Sunday, the Titans’ offensive set won’t be vastly different, but how the plays are executed could be. Whereas Young’s legs are one of his primary weapons, Collins is pretty much the textbook definition of a pocket passer.
“Kerry is obviously not as mobile as Vince is back there, but we still have to pass protect and maybe hold it for an extra second and do our job,” Roos said.
Collins’ teammates appear confident he can do the job if necessary against the Texans.
“Whoever is the quarterback, we’ve got to go out there and do our job,” tight end Bo Scaife said. “We’ve got a lot of faith in Kerry, and Kerry is going to be ready. [Young] is our guy, and we hope he is ready to go on Sunday, but however it works out, we’ve just got to deal with it.”
MILLER WAIVED: On Tuesday the Titans waived punter Josh Miller, who had been signed just before their Monday night game in New Orleans because of the back injury suffered by punter Craig Hentrich.
Hentrich only missed the one game, but the Titans kept Miller around as insurance in case Hentrich’s back problems flared up again.
The Titans did not immediately fill Miller’s spot on the 53-man roster, and will wait and see what their most pressing need might be before doing so. It is possible that quarterback Ingle Martin could move up from the practice squad as added insurance if Young is limited or unable to play Sunday.
TRYOUTS: The Titans have several offensive linemen in for workouts on Tuesday, including Mike Elgin, Bobby Harris, Enoka Lucas, Jason Murphy, Dan Stevenson and Sam Wilder.