Titans Eager to End Five-Game Skid

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- It's the "fourth quarter" of the season and the pressure is increasing.

The final four games of the regular season start when the Titans host the Colts Thursday night at LP Field. Tennessee has gone from first to last in the AFC South, and players said they are eager to stop a five-game skid.

"Our backs are against the wall," safety Michael Griffin said. "We're anxious to go back out and play and get a win. Nashville's a small city so the pressure is mounting. Everywhere you go you get asked (why the team isn't winning)."

Tennessee (5-7) suffered a shutout in the "third quarter" of the season and has lost two straight at home. The Titans last won on Oct. 24 with a franchise-record 27 points in the fourth quarter for a comeback win against Philadelphia. They last scored an offensive touchdown on Nov. 14 at Miami, and have endured a franchise-record 13 quarters without an offensive touchdown.

Quarterback Kerry Collins said players are aware of the scoring drought, but they need to block it out when they face Indianapolis (6-6).

"One thing I don't want for our guys is to press, especially offensively," Collins said. "Everybody talks about how we haven't scored a touchdown in how-many-ever quarters. We all know that. We all understand that, but it's counterproductive when you come out in a game and start pressing, start trying to do so much."

Collins went 14-for-32 and threw two interceptions in Sunday's 17-6 home loss to Jacksonville (7-5). It was his first action since he injured his calf at Miami. The Titans have used three starting quarterbacks in the past three games, which include three of the four lowest-scoring performances of the season.

Vince Young started against Washington (19-16 overtime loss by the Titans) and suffered a season-ending thumb injury. Rookie Rusty Smith relieved Young against Washington, and Smith started at Houston (20-0 loss by the Titans).

The Titans have struggled to get the running game going as well. Chris Johnson, who rushed for 2,006 yards in 2009, has 58 yards on 20 carries in the past two games.

Fullback Ahmard Hall said each of the 11 offensive players on the field at one time needs to focus on his responsibilities for each play.

"When you're losing, guys are always pressing, trying to do too much, trying to do other people's jobs or worry about what everybody else is doing instead of worrying about themselves," Hall said. "Then, guys are searching for reasons, and searching for why it's not working when it was working so well at the beginning of the year."

Coach Jeff Fisher recently said distractions are the most common reason a team loses a football game. Fisher said distractions cause lapses such as missed blocks, missed tackles, missed assignments, pre-snap penalties and dropped passes.

The quarterback changes, combined with Young leaving the locker room while Fisher was addressing the team after the Washington game, have led to a loss of continuity for the offense. A more serious revelation that offensive coordinator Mike Heimerdinger has cancer has also occurred in the past month.

Heimerdinger has tried to balance chemotherapy treatment with continuing to install game plans in the past two weeks.

Nine-year pro linebacker Will Witherspoon, who is in his first season with the Titans, said the team hasn't quit and will continue to fight the remainder of the season.

"There's been a lot of stuff that's happened, and a lot of challenges that we've faced," Witherspoon said. "Just like everybody else, we've got our bumps and bruises. We've got to come back out … and get it done."

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