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2012 Season Rewind: Wide Receivers

Posted Jan 7, 2013

Titans Online is taking a look back at the 2012 season by position group.

 

Wide Receivers | Click here to view other position reviews.

The Titans receiving corps welcomed rookie Kendall Wright and the return of Kenny Britt in 2012, and the duo joined Nate Washington as Tennessee’s top three threats at the position.

Wright, who was selected with the 20th overall pick of the NFL Draft, made an immediate impact for the Titans. He led Tennessee with 64 receptions, which tied with Jacksonville rookie Justin Blackmon for the most in the league by a rookie this season, and ranks second among all rookie seasons in Titans/Oilers franchise history. (Click here to watch a recent interview with Wright and “Voice of the Titans” Mike Keith).

Wright played in 15 games this season, missing the Titans’ trip to Green Bay because of a rib injury he suffered while trying to catch a deep ball in the previous game, but was primarily used this season on underneath routes. He accounted for 626 yards and four touchdowns with a long of 38.

Britt set a career high with 45 receptions in his return from multiple knee surgeries after he suffered a season-ending ACL and MCL tear in Week 3 of the 2011 season. Britt showed glimpses of explosive, play-making ability and wants to build on that next season as he becomes healthier. He had season highs of eight catches for 143 yards at Indianapolis, including a pair of 46-yard completions from first-year starting QB Jake Locker (click here to see the first pass again). Britt managed to make the second long reception with just his left hand against his shoulder pads because he was being interfered with during the play (click here to see it again).

Britt is optimistic that the Titans will learn from the growing pains of 2012 and improve their results next season.

“We’re young, and we’re still learning how to play with each other,” Britt said. “We’re starting to get our foundation. Everybody on this team can get better and that’s what we want during the offseason. I’m excited about (2013).”

Nate Washington led the Titans in receiving yards (746) and average per catch (16.2). Washington has made at least one catch in 78 straight games (including all 64 with the Titans). He also accounted for Tennessee’s longest pass play of the year — an incredible, 71-yarder during which he reached his hands over the head of Lions DB Jacob Lacey and coasted to the end zone before Detroit defenders could react to Washington making the improbable catch.

Damian Williams added 30 receptions for 324 yards while serving as a versatile backup at all three receiving positions in the Titans’ offense. Williams, however, missed three of the final four games of the season because of injuries and did not record a touchdown one year after he had 45 catches for 592 yards and five TDs.

Lavelle Hawkins added five catches for 62 yards in a limited capacity, and Michael Preston capitalized on his late-season promotion from the practice squad with five catches for 59 yards in the final four games of the year. (Click here to read about Preston's climb).

The chart below lists this season’s stats by Titans receivers. The team totals also include production by tight ends and running backs.

 Player

Rec.

Yards

Avg.

Long

TD

 Kendall Wright

64

626

9.8

38

4

 Nate Washington

46

746

16.2

71t

4

 Kenny Britt

45

589

13.1

46

4

 Damian Williams

30

324

10.8

27

0

 Lavelle Hawkins

5

62

12.4

42

0

 Michael Preston

5

59

11.8

21

0

 Wide Receivers Totals

195

2,406

12.3

71t

12

 Titans Receiving Totals

318

3,577

11.2

71t

17

 Opponents Receiving Totals

374

4,205

11.2

82t

31

Titans coach Mike Munchak replaced Chris Palmer with quarterbacks coach Dowell Loggains as offensive coordinator in the final five games of the season, but said the timing did not allow for a complete overhaul of the offensive scheme.

Munchak said during his season-ending press conference that he respects Palmer as a good football coach, but said the fit with the system and players was not aligning. Munchak said the team is likely to reduce the number of option routes that were in Palmer’s system because he thinks they created “gray” areas between receivers and quarterbacks that led to plays where the receiver and quarterback were not on the same page, causing incompletions and interceptions.

“Sometimes, you reach a point where it looked that good, last year we got some numbers, we were heading in the right direction we thought,” Munchak said. “I think this year we got a little more exposed, and some of our weaknesses showed up more than they did a year ago, and we couldn’t overcome them.”

 

Click here for a slideshow of Titans
wide receivers in 2012.

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