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Friday, March 12, 2010
Hood's good as veteran insurance

By Paul Kuharsky
ESPN.com

Odds are the starting cornerback opposite Cortland Finnegan on opening day for the Titans is a rookie or one of two second-year men, Jason McCourty or Ryan Mouton.

But with such an approach, Tennessee needs a veteran option who could play if none of those guys are ready, or to step in when someone gets hurt.

The Titans secured theirs Friday by re-signing Rod Hood.

It’s a far better plan than last year’s, when Jeff Fisher and the Titans decided a corner they’d burned for years when he was a Texan, DeMarcus Faggins, could fill that role. Faggins didn’t make the roster, and the Titans suffered from lack of depth at corner until they eventually added Hood.

He played well in some situations, OK in others. Fans who wanted to blame everything on a slipping Nick Harper, however, canonized Hood in a way he didn’t deserve.

If he’s the second corner, he’ll be hard pressed to rate as well as Denard Walker, Andre Dyson or Harper did as previous No. 2 cornerbacks.

At their peak, they were all sufficient, even as critics marveled at how opposing offenses actually completed passes in games while perhaps steering away from Samari Rolle or Finnegan.

So the insurance plan is in place.

It’s time now for the Titans to focus on offseason progress for McCourty and Mouton and on drafting a guy in the first or third round who can prove a better alternative than all the existing options.