AFC South Training Camp Reports

JagNation.com is keeping you updated with daily reports on what is going on with the Jaguars training camp. Nearly as important as what's going on with your Jaguars, is what's going on with their immediate competition in the AFC South. Here are some reports from the Jaguars division rivals.

Indianapolis Colts

The big news in Terre Haute, IN where the Colts are holding their training camp is the fact that Peyton Manning, Bob Sanders, and Dwight Freeney are all starting on the team's PUP list. To try and supplement the early loss of Manning, the Colts signed former Jaguars quarterback Quinn Gray, as well as former New York Giant Jared Lorenzen.

"(It's) competition to get better," team president Bill Polian said of the moves. "We felt that it was something that we had targeted, to perhaps upgrade, if we could. But we didn't want to do it with players who had no experience. We didn't want to do it with a rookie.

"So there were two players available, one of whom had won in the league in Quinn Gray and the other, Jared (Lorenzen), who we thought very highly of coming out of college (at Kentucky) and who's been in a similar (offensive) system in New York for awhile. So we thought it made sense."

The good news in Colts land is that Marvin Harrison began practicing on time, and he is reportedly looking as quick and sharp as ever, coming back from last season's knee injury. Although Harrison has looked fantastic, he's being limited to just one practice per day, as are DE Robert Mathis, MLB Gary Brackett, C Jeff Saturday, CB Tim Jennings, and OT Ryan Diem.

An interesting position battle will be for the starting job at right guard, as Charlie Johnson will battle rookie Mike Pollak with former starter Jake Scott departed to Tennessee (free agency).

Some minor camp injuries for the Colts include safety Melvin Bullitt, who sprained a thumb, and rookie linebacker Phillip Wheeler who has some soreness in his knee.


Tennessee Titans

The Titans resolved their biggest issue by getting franchised Pro Bowl defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth to sign his one-year, $7.25 million franchise tender. The Titans are hoping that Haynesworth can be the dominant, motivated player he was a year ago when he was also on the brink of free agency.

"The way I look at it, I'm making more money than I've ever made playing for the Titans, so you can't complain about that," Haynesworth said. "Regardless, I'm making $7.2 million. That's a lot of money, no matter how you cut it. I'm happy they're giving it to me, and we'll see what happens next year."

Another contract issue that was resolved was that of first-round pick, running back Chris Johnson, who was signed early Saturday morning. Johnson reportedly received a five-year, $12 million deal with $7 million guaranteed. The speedy Johnson will compete for snaps with Lendale White, as well as competing for special teams work as a return man. Johnson projects by some to be a Brian Westbrook type of player.

"They drafted him for a reason, and I'm looking forward to seeing him," said Lendale White. "I have no problems with sharing the rock. I honestly believe he's only going to make us that much better."

Most certainly the weakness on the Titans offense is at wide receiver, as the "two Justins," Gage and McCareins were lined up as the teams starting receivers. Along with those two historically unimpressive veterans are Roydell Williams, who has started camp on the PUP list, rookie Lavelle Hawkins, Biren Ealy, Brandon Jones, Mike Williams, and Chris Davis.

Cornerback Cortland Finnegan seems to be taking steps toward becoming one of the league's elite corners as he was more than solid a year ago, and has picked up right where he left off. Finnegan has great speed and instincts, and last year he made the loss of troubled corner Adam "don't call me Pacman" Jones sting a little bit less.


Houston Texans

Houston began their training camp by getting first-round pick, left tackle Duane Brown inked to a five-year, $9.1 million deal that includes $6.2 million in guarantees. Brown was immediately inserted with the first-team offense, and barring injury, he will likely become the Texans opening day starter at left tackle.

Despite his newfound wealth, not all things were fantastic for Brown in his first weekend as a pro as he found himself gassed and had to leave Saturday morning's practice early.

"Ah, man, it was terrible," Brown said. "It didn't get this hot in Virginia. ... Me, being young, I thought I could just come out there and do my thing, but there's a lot more to it."

The Texans boast one of the very best young defenses in the NFL, led by Mario Williams, Amobi Okoye, and DeMeco Ryans. They hope to build upon last season's success and make a push for a wildcard spot.

"I think we have a lot of talent," said star wide receiver Andre Johnson. "I just think we don't have a bunch of guys with big names. We have a bunch of guys that can go out and make plays and I think that's the big thing. Just because you have (a) big name, I don't really think that matters. If you have guys that make plays for you, that is all that matters."

The Texans have started out with a newfound physicality in their camp, and there has been a few minor casulties. Guard Mike Brisiel fractured his nose during the first day of training camp. He didn't miss a practice though, as he's been playing with a splint on it. Duane Brown and Fred Weary had to leave practice due to the heat, and cornerback Dunta Robinson began camp on the PUP list.

Filling in for Robinson will be second-year star Fred Bennett and free agent acquisition Jacques Reeves. Aside from those two, rookie Antwuan Molden has impressed thus far, and could compete for a nickel position.


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