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Chris Johnson struggles, Locker and Hasselbeck a mixed bag

Chris Johnson AP

The Titans don’t know who their starting quarterback will be this season. But they do know they need both candidates to play better than they did in the first preseason game.

The Titans do know who their starting running back will be this season. And they know they need him to play better than he did in the preseason opener, too.

Titans running back Chris Johnson, who last year followed a contract holdout with his worst NFL season, was nothing short of terrible on Saturday night in Seattle. Johnson gained just eight yards on five carries, and he was even worse in the passing game: The Titans threw three screen passes to Johnson, and all three fell incomplete, with two of them going right through Johnson’s hands.

Quarterbacks Matt Hasselbeck and Jake Locker were up and down for Tennessee. Hasselbeck didn’t play particularly well, but his numbers — 5-for-9 for 45 yards with two interceptions — look worse than he was. The first interception (on the first play of the game) was the fault of receiver Nate Washington, not Hasselbeck. Washington had the ball in his hands, bobbled it, knocked it into the air and watched helplessly as Seattle’s Brandon Browner picked it off and returned the interception 23 yards for a touchdown.

Hasselbeck was also victimized by Johnson dropping a third-down pass to end the Titans’ second drive. On Tennessee’s third possession, Hasselbeck started to get the offense moving but eventually forced a deep ball into double coverage for another pick.

Locker needed some time to settle down after coming in to replace Hasselbeck in the second quarter, but he eventually engineered an 11-play, 79-yard drive at the end of the first half to get the Titans into field goal range for their only points of the first half. Locker went into the locker room at halftime having gone 7-for-13 for 80 yards with no interceptions, and the Titans trailed 10-3.

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34 Responses to “Chris Johnson struggles, Locker and Hasselbeck a mixed bag”
  1. hulkhogansays says: Aug 11, 2012 11:37 PM

    Locker is my backup QB in my 16 team money league. He BETTER win the job over an aging Hasselbeck brother!!!

  2. armchairqb says: Aug 11, 2012 11:45 PM

    Chris Johnson struggles because he sucks.

  3. aaroncurryisbust says: Aug 11, 2012 11:45 PM

    How about giving some credit to Seattle’s defense for once?

  4. pats777 says: Aug 11, 2012 11:46 PM

    Johnson hasn’t done jack squat since the Titans let Alge Crumpler go. Maybe they should give him a call..

  5. skoobyfl says: Aug 11, 2012 11:48 PM

    He ran to the bank, no reason to run anymore.

  6. stampnhawk says: Aug 11, 2012 11:53 PM

    Hasslebeck not as bad as it looked?

    His last throw was similar to throws he made the last 3 seasons in Seattle…a rainbow into double coverage, and he knew it was a bad decision but decided to throw it anyways.

    Not quite the way you want to lead your team as the veteran QB, or, how you should show the team’s next QB in Locker how to handle yourself.

  7. gaykegayden says: Aug 11, 2012 11:53 PM

    Stop with the aspriring stuff “Hulk”. Go create a fake twitter handle and entertain yourself with that.

  8. bennyb82 says: Aug 11, 2012 11:54 PM

    5 carries for 8 yards sounds about right for Chris Johnson as of late. I dont see why this is news.

  9. theultimatewarrior669 says: Aug 11, 2012 11:54 PM

    HOGAN! YOU CONSTANTLY MAKE BAD CHOICES AND YOU WILL PAY!

    CHRIS JOHNSON IS NO WARRIOR! HE GOT HIS FAT CONTRACT AND QUIT PLAYING!

  10. lilb360 says: Aug 12, 2012 12:04 AM

    God I seriously wish one NFL owner would take a page from George Steinbrenner (even though he was a douche) and require his players to keep their hair clean and cut. These guys like Chris Johnson and hundreds of other players look ridiculous with they’re nasty azz hair.
    I know completely unrelated to this article but it’s been irritating me for years.

  11. jtbaudendistel says: Aug 12, 2012 12:06 AM

    Comments about your personal fantasy football league should come with a life time band from PROFOOTBALLTALK.COM! No one cares about your fantasy team

  12. prplpuzzetrz says: Aug 12, 2012 12:11 AM

    Johnson was solid with a killer O/ line for 1 year….
    One hit wonder! Dump him!

  13. hulkhogansays says: Aug 12, 2012 12:21 AM

    Well if it weren’t for Fantasy football, I wouldn’t have even guessed they played Pro Football in that obscure state brother.

  14. peytonsneck18 says: Aug 12, 2012 12:29 AM

    What u gona do…when the biggest doosh come at u…brother

  15. 4512dawg4512 says: Aug 12, 2012 12:29 AM

    Chris Johnson…. Overrated? Been saying it for two years now.
    He’s no good up the middle, he’s skinny, he can’t and won’t block for the QB, he’s not very smart. However on a defensive break down he can get the corner and break into the secondary. At the end of the day? Definitely overrated.

  16. hulkhogansays says: Aug 12, 2012 12:31 AM

    lilb360 says:
    Aug 12, 2012 12:04 AM
    God I seriously wish one NFL owner would take a page from George Steinbrenner (even though he was a douche) and require his players to keep their hair clean and cut. These guys like Chris Johnson and hundreds of other players look ridiculous with they’re nasty azz hair.
    —–
    If only you could see how racist that remark is brother. This is America and he’s playing a sport/game. He can do whatever he pleases as long as he’s a law abiding citizen and performing on the field brother.

  17. spellingcops says: Aug 12, 2012 1:35 AM

    jtbaudendistel
    Aug 11, 2012, 10:06 PM MDT
    Comments about your personal fantasy football league should come with a life time band from PROFOOTBALLTALK.COM! No one cares about your fantasy team
    ——————————————
    A lifetime band huh? Pft could use a few things, but suggestions from Mensa members is not one of them.

  18. darknessspreads says: Aug 12, 2012 1:36 AM

    lilb360 says: God I seriously wish one NFL owner would take a page from George Steinbrenner (even though he was a douche) and require his players to keep their hair clean and cut. These guys like Chris Johnson and hundreds of other players look ridiculous with they’re nasty azz hair.
    I know completely unrelated to this article but it’s been irritating me for years.

    Spoken just like a lily-white dude that doesn’t understand how few options there are for doing anything with black-person hair.

  19. covercorner says: Aug 12, 2012 1:38 AM

    Chris Johnson will not be the 5th RB on my fantasy football team this year.

  20. obie09 says: Aug 12, 2012 1:55 AM

    Yes, CJ sucks, the guy that has the most rushing yards in the NFL since he was drafted in 08 with 4.8 YPC which is at the very top as well. Let’s say he sucks off his 5 carries today, which he was hit right away in the backfield on 3 of them one for a 5 yard loss, he had a nice 9 yard run on one of the other two. The Titans o-line was poor in the first quarter so they get an equal amount of the blame if we’re going to lambast CJ.

  21. larrydavid815 says: Aug 12, 2012 2:00 AM

    I am going to love watching the guy in this years draft cry all season because Chris Johnson still sucks.

  22. scoobaj says: Aug 12, 2012 2:10 AM

    Seahawks looked like they were wearing the TRON movie suits, pretty sweet unis

  23. undraftedstar says: Aug 12, 2012 2:15 AM

    Didn’t know preseason count…CJ is gonna be alright.Hasselbeck & Locker is another story, I see potential in locker though.His nasty hair…LMAO,why are you even worried about that.

  24. linvillegorge says: Aug 12, 2012 4:32 AM

    CJ got his big money contract and now he’s fat and happy. He’s the RB equivalent of Albert Haynesworth.

  25. oldcracker says: Aug 12, 2012 5:26 AM

    Can you tell that Jeff Fisher is gone?

  26. trojanwarrior007 says: Aug 12, 2012 5:54 AM

    he’s the reason why Forte and Rice had to fight for their deals.

  27. hmax13 says: Aug 12, 2012 8:53 AM

    At least he’s a better RB than that Usain Bolt guy…

  28. realitypolice says: Aug 12, 2012 8:55 AM

    aaroncurryisbust says:
    Aug 11, 2012 11:45 PM
    How about giving some credit to Seattle’s defense for once?

    I didn’t realize the Titans played all 16 of their games against Seattle last year.

  29. realitypolice says: Aug 12, 2012 8:57 AM

    @obie09-

    Let’s say he stinks because he played 16 terrible games last year and hasn’t been an even decent RB since he got paid.

    And let’s say he’s the reason no RB will ever get a mega deal again.

  30. jeffblast36 says: Aug 12, 2012 8:59 AM

    Well he’s at it again no guts no drive and no show except to pick up his pay check.If you want to know how good he is just ask him.It is time that the titans send him a message sat his assssss on the bench for the first half next game.He is only a legend in his on mind not on the field.Just send him packing or trade him I’m fed up with him.There I’ve said it and i feel good.

  31. deanok says: Aug 12, 2012 9:09 AM

    cash cows dont run at all

  32. obie09 says: Aug 12, 2012 9:31 AM

    @lol what????

    Chris Johnson the 2nd half of the year (final 8 games)

    141 carries 681 yards 4.8 YPC

    3rd in NFL in yards for the 2nd half of the year.

  33. jeffesky says: Aug 12, 2012 9:37 AM

    As a life long hawk fan im also a matt h and locker fan. thing is matt will do goofy things at times but he is solid with 20 plus playoff games under his belt he 10 plus wins and lit up drew brees just two years ago. he is a leader so dont panic. whn locker gets the job they will begin using his running skills a bit more to open lanes. locker has never been accurate in the pocket so i think they want him working on that for now so when he is the starter hes got a more complete skill set. you guys are in great shape . both guys are character guys and winners. go hawks!!!!

  34. edgarh21 says: Aug 12, 2012 3:03 PM

    You’re blowing it way out of proportion CJ has never been a 5 yards a carry guy.

    He’s been a 1, 2, 1 yards then out of nowhere there he goes for 60 yard touchdown.

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