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Intensity Picks up in Shoulder Pad Practice




NASHVILLE, Tenn. --** The intensity turned up a notch Sunday as the Tennessee Titans practiced in shoulder pads for the first time during this year's training camp.

A large contingent of Titans fans turned out Sunday on a perfect day at Baptist Sports Park. The only cloud on this day was that rookie wide receiver Kenny Britt, who signed his contract with the team Saturday, was unable to practice due to a lingering hamstring injury.

"We want to take an aggressive approach to his rehab and get his condition level up before we allow him to come back on the practice field," head coach Jeff Fisher said.

Britt pulled his hamstring during organized team activities earlier in the summer, and Fisher wants to be cautious so the rookie from Rutgers does not reinjure himself. Britt had been in Nashville the past two days waiting for his agent to wrap up contract negotiations. Fellow rookie Sen'Derrick Marks said that he had visited Britt, and it seemed that Britt's teammates were simply glad to have him back in the locker room.

Despite not being able to practice, Britt appeared relieved to be back at Baptist Sports.

"It's frustrating, but I'm happy to be here back with my teammates, back with the rookie class. Now I will get ready to learn the playbook and take mental reps," Britt said.

With the shoulder pads finally on, the team speed slowed slightly and the players needed time to adjust. There were a few more dropped balls than usual, but was to be expected on the first day of pads.

"Today was the first day in pads, so we're going to go back and look at the tape and continue to evaluate. So far they are doing a good job," Fisher said.

DAVIS IMPRESSES: Cornerback Tarnard Davis now has three interceptions during live play over the past two days. Today Davis had two interceptions, and on Saturday he jumped a slant route to get to the ball in front of tight end Jared Cook. After losing cornerbacks Chris Carr and Eric King to free agency, the Titans are looking for one of their new cornerbacks to step up and be effective.

WASHINGTON SHOWS SPEED: Wide receiver Nate Washington has been one of the early bright spots of training camp. The shifty receivers continues to display his speed, while developing chemistry with Ttians QB Kerry Collins. On Sunday during one-on-one drills, Washington ran crisp routes and caught a nice back shoulder touchdown pass from Collins.

"I know the plays now, I know my position and I know where I'm supposed to be," Washington said. "Now it's just getting the pads on, taking the contact and working through the contact type of collisions throughout the route."

PUSH AND SHOVE: The first two days of training camp went smoothly in terms of physical play without any of the extracurricular pushing and shoving. With shoulder pads finally on, there was much more physicality, and only one shoving match occurred. Defensive tackle LaJuan Ramsey and offensive lineman Jason Murphy got a little up close and personal after one play, but it was quickly broken up and Murphy seemed sure that it was nothing personal.

"I think it's just a part of the game. Losing your temper is a part of the game sometimes," Murhpy said. "He knows that we're still teammates and brothers in the locker room and that's what it is."

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