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Friday, December 19, 2008
'If you can overcome it, you're a pretty good team'

By Paul Kuharsky
ESPN.com

Posted by ESPN.com's Paul Kuharsky

Earlier this season, the Colts endured plenty of injuries on the offensive line and in the defensive backfield.

Part of what stamps them as a good team is that they patched holes and held together through such difficult circumstances.

Now the Titans face similar adversity on their defensive line. For Sunday's monster matchup with Pittsburgh and next week's finale in Indianapolis, they will be without their top two defensive linemen -- tackle Albert Haynesworth and end Kyle Vanden Bosch -- who have both played in the Pro Bowl.

I asked Jeff Fisher about good teams dealing with injuries in bunches at one position.

"I wouldn't say good teams face it, I would say it's one of the more difficult things to overcome," he said. "And if you can overcome it, then in all likelihood, you're a pretty good team."

Amon Gordon, who's been on the practice squad since Nov. 5 when the Titans filled a hole created by the Colts signing Antonio Johnson to their 53-man roster, will likely be in action as the third tackle behind Tony Brown and rookie Jason Jones.

In three games without Haynesworth last season, the Titans went 0-3. In those games, I thought Brown went from a very good complementary player to an average primary one. But he's gotten better and gets a chance to change that impression.

Dave Ball and Jacob Ford have done nice work filling in for Vanden Bosch in several games this season and will try to do so again. Ball could slide inside some if needed.

The Titans believe they can rush the passer against anyone. In their biggest game of the year, they'll get as big a chance as ever to prove it.