Titans admit mistakes, make moves
September, 29, 2009
By Paul Kuharsky | ESPN.com
Posted by ESPN.com's Paul Kuharsky
In one day of roster moves the Titans admitted two mistakes.
Tuesday they signed veteran return man Mark Jones and defensive back Kevin Kaesviharn. They made room by cutting running back Chris Henry and putting punter Craig Hentrich on IR.
Bringing Jones back is a huge admission of culpability for Jeff Fisher. Such a reversal is rare during his tenure with the franchise, which dates back to 1994, especially when not prompted by injury.
Jones, a middling receiver who’s been a reliable returner, was cut to get the Titans' roster down to 53 at the end of the preseason. Fisher was determined to use rookie running back Javon Ringer as the kick returner and rookie corner Ryan Mouton as the punt returner (after Cortland Finnegan filled in for one game).
Ringer lost his job after two games, and Mouton started Sunday in New York against the Jets in both roles. But he fumbled a kickoff and a punt, which both led directly to Jets scores and the Titans fell to 0-3.
Fisher and the Titans have also been stubborn with Henry, who survived cuts when Quinton Ganther was hurt in the preseason finale but who was clearly not one of the team’s best 53 players and certainly was not worthy of being among the active 45 the last two weeks.
Henry was a second-round choice out of Arizona, 50th overall, in 2007. The Titans got wowed by his combine performance but forgot to give sufficient weight to his football instincts.
If a fourth running back is in the game-day mix, he’ll have to be a better special-teamer than Henry was.
Mouton may be the nickel while Vincent Fuller is out a month or more to recover from a broken arm. But Mouton or another rookie corner, Jason McCourty, could be in the mix to start with Finnegan potentially out of the lineup with a hamstring injury.
Kaesviharn gives the Titans a veteran defensive back to have in the mix as they explore alternatives and wait on key people to get healthy.