Titans Game Notes




BIRONAS GAME-WINNER: In overtime, Rob Bironas booted a 46-yard field goal to win the game. The kick was his ninth career game-winning kick (final score of game and put Titans ahead in fourth quarter or overtime) and his second of the season. Previously this year he kicked the game-winner at Houston on Nov. 23.

JOHNSON SECOND IN TEAM HISTORY IN A SINGLE SEASON: In the third quarter, Chris Johnson passed Earl Campbell (1,697 yards in 1979) for second place on the club's single-season rushing list. Johnson now has 1,730 rushing yards in 2009 and stands 204 yards shy of Campbell's 1980 franchise record of 1,934 yards in a season.

JOHNSON IN ELITE EIGHT-PLAYER GROUP: With a five-yard carry in the fourth quarter, Chris Johnson recorded his 14th career 100-yard rushing game and his ninth consecutive 100-yard game, which extends his franchise record and makes him the eighth player in NFL history with 100 rushing yards in at least nine consecutive games. Johnson joins Barry Sanders (14 in 1997), Marcus Allen (11 in 1985-86), Walter Payton (nine in 1985), Fred Taylor (nine in 2000), Deuce McAllister (nine in 2003), Larry Johnson (nine in 2005) and LaDainian Tomlinson (nine in 2006). Johnson's totals against the Dolphins included 29 carries for 104 yards and two receptions for 55 yards.

YOUNG SETS CAREER HIGH: For the first time in his career, Titans quarterback Vince Young completed three touchdown passes. A 22-yard touchdown pass to Justin Gage in the first quarter gave him at least one touchdown pass in a career-long six consecutive games and in seven of his eight starts in 2009. He later added touchdowns of 21 yards to Gage and 32 yards to Nate Washington. Young, who previously had recorded two touchdown passes in seven different contests, finished the game against Miami with a 103.3 passer rating. He completed 14 of 27 passes with one interception.

THREE PICKS BY SECONDARY KEY IN VICTORY: The Titans secondary came up with three crucial interceptions against the Dolphins. With Miami driving near the end of the first half, linebacker Stephen Tulloch grabbed hold of Chad Henne as the Dolphins quarterback was eying his receivers. Henne released the ball, but it sailed into the arms of cornerback Nick Harper at the Tennessee 28-yard line. It marked Harper's 21st career interception and his first since Oct. 5, 2008 at Baltimore. In the third quarter, strong safety Chris Hope notched his 18th career interception (third of season) by picking off a Henne pass in the end zone. Finally, in overtime, free safety Michael Griffin got on the board (11th career, first of season) with an interception at the 45-yard line. A three-yard return and 15-yard personal foul penalty on the Dolphins put the Titans in position for the game-winning field goal.

GAGE SCORES ON FIRST TWO CATCHES SINCE INJURY: On third-and-five in the first quarter, Vince Young hit wide receiver Justin Gage with a 22-yard touchdown pass. It was Gage's first reception since injuring his back on an acrobatic catch at San Francisco on Nov. 8. After the injury, he was inactive for four weeks and then did not post a reception in limited action on Dec. 13 against the Rams. Late in the second quarter against the Dolphins, Gage tied his career high with his second touchdown reception of the game, a 21-yarder that gave the Titans a 17-6 lead.

GRIFFIN NOTCHES TWO OF TEAM'S FOUR TAKEAWAYS: Defensive tackle Tony Brown and safety Michael Griffin combined early in the second quarter on the Titans' first takeaway. Brown forced his third fumble of the season (fourth of career) on a Ricky Williams carry, and Griffin was there at the Tennessee 20 for his second fumble recovery of the season (second career). Then, in overtime, Griffin's interception put the Titans in position for the game-winning field goal.

CAREER LONG BY HAWKINS: In the first quarter, the Titans converted a third-and-10 when Lavelle Hawkins recorded a career-long 32-yard reception. The second-year player has seven catches for 110 yards this season.

DEFENSE LIMITING OPPONENTS IN FIRST HALF: For the second consecutive week and the third time in four weeks, the Titans did not allow their opponents to score a touchdown in the first half.

WASHINGTON SETS CAREER MARK: With a 32-yard touchdown reception in the third quarter, wide receiver Nate Washington set a new career high. The 2009 unrestricted free agent addition from the Pittsburgh Steelers surpassed his previous career mark of five touchdown receptions in 2007.

BIRONAS HITS THE CENTURY MARK: With his first point of the game, and extra point in the first quarter, Rob Bironas reached the 100-point mark for the third consecutive season.

DEFENSE TIGHTENING ON FIRST DRIVE OF SECOND HALF: To open the second half, the Titans forced the Dolphins into a three-and-out. It marked the fifth consecutive game and the sixth time in the last seven games the Titans' opponents did not score on their opening possession

BULLUCK LEAVES GAME EARLY: In his team-leading 127th consecutive start, linebacker Keith Bulluck was knocked out of the game in the third quarter with a sprained left knee. The 10-year veteran did not return. The Titans, who already were without opposite outside linebacker David Thornton (shoulder injury), finished the game with Stephen Tulloch (starter at middle linebacker), Gerald McRath (reserve outside linebacker) and Colin Allred filling the linebacker spots.

KERN PINS DOWN DOLPHINS: The Titans offense went three-and-out with less than two minutes remaining in the game immediately after the Dolphins tied the game at 24-24. Brett Kern booted a 59-yard punt, which was downed at the two-yard line by Jason McCourty. The Dolphins, armed with a timeout and 56 seconds on the clock, elected to hand the ball off twice and run out the clock.

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