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Something Is Amiss for Titans at Home

November 13, 2000|From Associated Press

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The Tennessee Titans couldn't pull off another miracle at Adelphia Coliseum.

The Titans, who found nearly every way to win at their new stadium, discovered a way to lose when Al Del Greco missed an extra-point attempt and a field-goal attempt in the final minutes of a 24-23 loss to the Baltimore Ravens Sunday.

Trent Dilfer passed to Patrick Johnson for a two-yard touchdown with 19 seconds left, and Matt Stover's extra point lifted the Ravens into the lead. The defeat ended Tennessee's NFL record of 12 regular-season games without a loss at a new stadium.

The Titans pulled ahead for the first time at 23-17 on an 87-yard interception return for a touchdown by Perry Phenix with 2:30 left, but Del Greco missed his first extra-point attempt in 229 tries, a streak that started in 1993.

Tennessee (8-2) got the ball back with 19 seconds left, and Steve McNair quickly moved the Titans down the field to give Del Greco a chance to win his second game in a row with a last-second field goal.

"We thought it was some more of the magic we have here," Titan tackle Jason Fisk said. "It looked like we were going to do it again."

But the man nicknamed "Automatic Al" hooked his 43-yard attempt wide right, ending the Titans' winning streak at eight overall and their Adelphia streak at 12. The home streak did not include the Music City Miracle in the playoffs last season when the Titans scored on a trick play on a kickoff return on the final play.

The missed field goal might not have been an issue if Del Greco hadn't bounced his extra-point attempt off the upright after Phenix's touchdown return.

"We should not have let it get to where an extra point would be the difference," Titans cornerback Samari Rolle said. "Al's a pro. There's not another kicker in the league I'd like to have on my team."

Dilfer was 23 for 36 for 281 yards and two touchdowns as the Ravens (7-4) rolled up 361 yards against the NFL's fourth-stingiest defense.

Baltimore, with the league's top-rated defense, held the Titans to 286 total yards. Eddie George, the NFL's sixth-leading rusher, had only 28 yards in 12 carries.


Reversal of Fortunes

The much-maligned Trent Dilfer has outplayed incumbent starter Tony Banks while leading the Ravens to back-to-back victories. A comparison of the QB's as starters:

Category Dilfer Banks W-L 2-1 5-3 Comp./Comp. 19/31.3 18.5/34.9 Yards 225.7 191.6 TD/Int 1.7/0.7 1.0/1.0 Rating 91.3 68.7 Pts./GamePG 20.0 16.8 -- SEARCH BY ROY JURGENS

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