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Moss, C.J. Bond in Short Time Together

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Randy Moss did a little bit of coaching Thursday but his coaxing power on one younger Titans player needs work.

Moss, a 13-year NFL veteran who joined Tennessee last month, stopped wide receivers' drills to demonstrate two different techniques to younger receivers. After practice Moss talked about his first three games with the Titans. He has four catches since joining the team but is more concerned that Tennessee has lost each game that he's been in a Titans uniform.

Moss also said he's enjoyed his Titans teammates, particularly third-year pro running back Chris Johnson, whose locker is next to his at Baptist Sports Park.

"CJ is a special player," Moss said. "He's the youngster and I'm the old vet. One thing that I cannot get him to do is get in that cold tub (for post-workout therapy). I just can't get him to do it. I'm in the cold tub every single day resting these old legs of mine. Hopefully it doesn't catch him, but Father Time is undefeated."

Johnson had 247 yards on 38 carries in Moss's first two games with Tennessee and recorded two of his top three yards-per-carry averages this season (6.9 at Miami and 6.2 against Washington). Houston, however, found a way to shut down Johnson (5 yards on seven carries) and Moss (three catches for 23 yards) as Tennessee started its third quarterback in as many weeks and was shut out for the first time this season.

Rookie Rusty Smith made his first NFL start at Houston one week after relieving Vince Young, who suffered a season-ending injury against Washington. Backup Kerry Collins, who started against Miami but injured his calf, is hoping to return to the Titans lineup this week.

"(Three quarterbacks in three weeks) is hard, but at the same time, I've still got to come to work. I've still got to play hard," Moss said. "That's just an excuse, to be honest with you. … Somehow those 11 guys have to make it happen, and the last couple of weeks we haven't been doing that. Hopefully we can put a whole 60-minute game together."

Moss, who was teammates with Collins one season in Oakland, said the 16-year pro QB will bring experience to the post if he is able to play against Jacksonville Sunday. Collins took starters' reps Thursday.

"He's definitely a proven vet," Moss said. "Last week we just kept shooting ourselves in the foot. It's nothing to blame on the quarterback for last week's performance. All 11 of us have got to work together collectively to make it happen. Hopefully we can put some drives together, move the ball and stay on the field on third down."

Full speed ahead

Titans coach Jeff Fisher rolled back the start of Wednesday's practice time by two hours and scheduled it as a walk-through. Fisher said familiarity with Jacksonville, the fact that a game with Indianapolis will follow quickly on Dec. 9 and injuries were a reason to give players more time to rest.

"They're fine," Fisher said Thursday. "We got back to our normal schedule and had a lot of energy on the practice field. I think giving them an opportunity to rest and get their legs back under them was good."

The Titans were back at full speed Thursday, but linebacker Stephen Tulloch and safety Michael Griffin—Tennessee's top two leading tacklers—said players benefitted from the extra recovery time.

"We'll be fresher. Coach did a good job of keeping us fresh," Tulloch said. "It's going to be a big-time game this week. We've got two games in less than eight days or so, so we've got to take care of our bodies the best way we can because we know Sunday's going to be a very physical game and then we have to turn around Thursday night and play the Colts."

Tennessee's defense has played more snaps (779) than any other unit in the NFL. Houston's defense has recorded 703 scrimmage plays, Indianapolis has recorded 682 and Jacksonville has recorded 653.

"We've played a lot of snaps on defense, and Coach Fisher always does a great job of taking care of our legs, staying healthy, staying fresh," Griffin said. "There's some nicks and bruises here and there. Yesterday was a great opportunity for us to try and recover. We're trying to stay healthy."

Defensive linemen back on the field

Defensive ends Dave Ball (concussion against Washington) and Jason Babin (ankle against Houston) returned to practice Thursday. Ball has a career-high seven sacks this season, and Babin has a career and team-high nine sacks, which is tied for sixth in the NFL.

"(I'm) just taking it slow. I've been symptom-free for the last week," Ball said. "I've just got to ease my way into it. I was rusty (Thursday), so I've just got to find my way back into the play. I knew it in the game. It's not fun any time you've got to stand on the sideline and watch and you can't help your team in any way. It's going to be really good to get back."

Babin, who was limited in practice Thursday, had to consult the game film to figure out when he hurt his ankle against the Texans.

"I think I'll be fine," Babin said. "I actually kicked (Jacob Ford) in the knee. We figured it out. We watched the tape. I came around and was trying to pull down (Texans QB Matt) Schaub and my leg spun around and hit Jake in the knee."

Defensive tackles Jason Jones (knee against Washington) and Tony Brown (knee) also practiced Thursday, but Sen'Derrick Marks (ankle against Houston) did not.

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