Britt to return for Titans, Washington may be out

Britt to return for Titans, Washington may be out

Published Sep. 14, 2012 2:38 p.m. ET

The Tennessee Titans will get a star receiver back on Sunday but might be playing without another top one when they visit San Diego.

Kenny Britt, who sat out the season-opening 34-13 loss to New England because of a one-game suspension he received for an offseason arrest on suspicion of DWI, will return to action for the first time in almost exactly a year after suffering a season-ending knee injury in 17-14 win over Denver on Sept. 25 of last year. Meanwhile, Nate Washington, who blossomed into the Titans’ No. 1 receiver last year in Britt’s absence, is listed as questionable with a leg contusion he suffered last week against the Patriots.

Britt tore the ACL and MCL in his right knee in that September 2011 game and later underwent subsequent arthroscopic surgery on it in May. In late June, he underwent arthroscopic surgery on his left knee. Both of those injuries limited him during training camp and he did not catch a single pass in a preseason game.

Britt estimated on Wednesday that he was 90 to 95 percent healthy and hoped to be 100 percent by Sunday. The physically imposing 6-foot-3, 215-pound receiver was on a pace for more than 1,500 receiving yards and 15 touchdowns last season after three games before he got hurt.

“I’m ready to get give that first hit instead of taking that first hit,” Britt said in a video posted on the Titans’ Web site. “To tell you the truth, I don’t want to get hit any more. It felt good to get back out there and get them shoulder pads back on.”

Britt’s role might be somewhat limited on Sunday.

“I’m eager to see how he does just to get him back in the swing of our offense and as time goes on bring us what he’s brought us in the past,” general manager Ruston Webster said on Friday in an interview on Nashville’s 104.5-FM The Zone. “…He’s really anxious. I’m not going to expect too much, but I’m looking forward to seeing him.”

Britt’s arrest over the summer was his eighth since entering the NFL in 2009. He had an attention-grabbing offseason for all the wrong reasons. On Aug. 6, he met with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell in regards to the league’s personal conduct policy. Upon returning to the team’s practice facility, he missed a rehab assignment, for which he was fined nearly $10,000 by the Titans. In a fit of pique, Britt took a photo of the fine and posted it on his Instagram page.

He seemed eager on Wednesday to put those things behind him.

“Oh, man, oh, everything’s off my shoulders right now,” he said. “I can just think about football. I can think about just helping my team and that’s what I want to do for the rest of the year.”

On Friday, Washington did not practice for the third consecutive day this week, making his outlook for Sunday dim. Washington, in his eighth season, had a break-out season last year with his first 1,000-yard receiving season.

On Thursday, head coach Mike Munchak said that Washington was still sore from a hit he took on Sunday. Munchak was optimistic that Washington would practice on Friday and that he would play on Sunday.

“He ran today and did some things, obviously, didn’t do anything with the team,” Munchak said on Thursday in a video posted on the Titans’ Web site. “… Again, we still feel good about the chance of him playing this week.”

The Titans already have ruled out starting linebacker Colin McCarthy (ankle) and offensive lineman Mike Otto (knee, finger).

The best knews for the Titans on the injury front is that starting quarterback Jake Locker, who suffered an injury to his left shoulder last week while making a tackle, practiced all week and is expected to play. Defensive tackle Sen’Derrick Marks, who sat out the opener with a right knee injury, also is expected to play on Sunday.