The Tennessee Titans are just as stingy on defense as they were a year ago. Just ask Jacksonville and David Garrard.
The Titans sacked Garrard seven times and Cortland Finnegan intercepted him twice in beating the Jaguars 17-10 Sunday in the season opener between the AFC's two wild cards in 2007.
Jacksonville came in without top backup Richard Collier on the offensive line after he was shot earlier this week. The Jaguars had three more linemen get hurt, and Maurice Williams and left guard Vince Manuwai did not return. That helped Tennessee limit the Jaguars to 187 yards offense, just 33 yards rushing by what was the NFL's second-best rushing team in 2007.
The Jaguars, who had been an NFL-best 9-4 in season openers, now have lost two straight to Tennessee.
Jacksonville had first-and-goal from the Titans 9 in the final minutes. But Garrard was incomplete on three straight passes, and Josh Scobee kicked a 27-yard field goal with 2:13 to go. The Jaguars tried to recover an onside kick, but illegally touched it before the ball went 10 yards.
The Titans failed to pick up a first down on fourth-and-1, giving Jacksonville a last shot with 14 seconds to go. But All-Pro defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth sacked Garrard for the final time.
The Titans showed off the best addition to their offense in Chris Johnson, their first-round pick out of East Carolina. He ran 15 times for 93 yards and had three catches for 34, including a 7-yard touchdown pass from Vince Young. LenDale White added a 1-yard TD rush in the fourth quarter.
But Young had a rough day; he was intercepted twice and threw for 110 yards. His second pick came a play after Finnegan's second interception. Fans booed heavily as he was slow to head back onto the field late in the fourth quarter.
Young sprained his left knee a couple plays later when linebacker Daryl Smith collided with the quarterback's leg, and Young limped off.
Kerry Collins replaced Young and promptly tossed a short pass that was turned into a 44-yard gain by tight end Bo Scaife. That gave the backup more yards passing than Young had in the second half with 38. White capped the 80-yard drive with his TD with 3:47 left and a 17-7 lead.
The Titans had the fifth-stingiest defense in the NFL in 2007, and it was dominant for most of the day.
Garrard did toss a 1-yard TD to Greg Jones for a 7-3 lead in the second quarter, set up by safety Gerald Sensabaugh's interception.
Another sack, this one by Titans safety Michael Griffin, forced the Jaguars to try a 37-yard field goal in the third quarter. But the ball went just outside the top of the right goal post. Scobee tried to argue his case with officials, but there was no replay.
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