Three Quick Hits from Thursday's Practice

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. − The Titans just wrapped up practice on Thursday at Saint Thomas Sports Park.

The team will travel to Oakland on Friday for preseason game No.3, Saturday night against the Raiders.

Three quick hits:

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Spain aims to hold on**

Quinton Spain worked with the starting unit at left guard during OTAs and all of training camp, and he'll start there on Saturday against the Raiders, just like the first two preseason contests.

But Spain has been challenged by his head coach. Mike Mularkey said Spain played "average" last week against the Panthers, and this week he plans to use rookie Sebastian Tretola some with the first unit at left guard.

"I just look at it as competition, and I need to keep working on things I need to work on,'' Spain said on Thursday. "I think I have been playing pretty good, but I need to work on my technique because (coaches) are big on technique."

Spain played in seven games last season, with six starts at left guard.

Brian Schwenke has also worked with the first group at left guard as well. Mularkey said Schwenke will work more at center this week.

"I feel like we have good chemistry as an offensive line,'' Spain said. "And I think whoever is in that left guard spot is going to have good chemistry with the group."

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Byard chance**

In addition to getting more opportunities in the return game, Mularkey said the team plans to give rookie Kevin Byard more work as a returner early in the game.

But his chances might not end there.

Byard, a third-round pick out of MTSU, might also work with the first-team defense at safety on Saturday against the Raiders, per Mularkey.

"You're going to see a lot of guys playing together,'' Mularkey said. "And that's going to be coordinated by our secondary coaches. But without saying every one of the combinations, there will be some you haven't seen in the preseason.

"Every day (Kevin) does something that confirms why you picked him. He has done everything we thought he could do. … He may get some reps earlier. We are very pleased with him."

Injuries

Receiver Kendall Wright (hamstring), cornerback Perrish Cox (ankle) and center Andy Gallik (knee) did not practice on Thursday.

All three players have been ruled out for Oakland, but Mularkey hopes Cox and Wright will play in the preseason finale at Miami.

Titans tidbits

• Mularkey said the plan is to play the starters for a half against the Raiders.

• Mularkey said the Titans will take a 20-minute walk as a team in the Lake Merritt area after landing on Oakland tomorrow.

Titans players take the field for Thursday's practice at Saint Thomas Sports Park. (Photos: Gary Glenn)

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