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TENNESSEE 30, BUFFALO 29

It's Young again as Titans stay in race

December 25, 2006|From the Associated Press

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. — If Vince Young keeps this up, the Tennessee Titans just might do the unthinkable and make the playoffs.

The rookie first-round draft pick has the Titans (8-7), who lost their first five games, alive in the AFC playoff race entering the final weekend after rallying them to a 30-29 win over the Buffalo Bills on Sunday.

The doubters have motivated Young all season long.

"That's all you heard all season, that a rookie's not going to be able to do this and that," Young said. "And I took that as, 'Hey, let's show the world that you can do that.' "

Young passed for two touchdowns and ran for another to engineer his fourth comeback in the fourth quarter or overtime. This time, he helped Tennessee overcome a 29-20 deficit in the final 12 minutes. After connecting with Brandon Jones on a 29-yard touchdown pass, Young engineered a 14-play, 75-yard drive, which Rob Bironas capped with a 30-yard field goal with 2:10 left.

Young's most electrifying play came at the end of the first half, when he scored on a 36-yard keeper on fourth and two.

The loss knocked the Bills (7-8) out of playoff contention.

"This loss really hurts," said linebacker London Fletcher, whose team had won five of its previous seven games. "We had everything fall into place the way you want it to fall. We played a home game in a situation where you have to beat a team. And we just didn't get the job done."

Young is 8-4 as a starter and has led the Titans to six straight wins as they attempt to become the first NFL team to qualify for the playoffs after starting the season 0-5.

They still need help, and must win their last game, at home against New England next weekend.

"Every week he does something to amaze me," Jones said. "I can't believe some of the things that he does."

At the end of a wild, back-and-forth contest featuring seven lead changes, the Bills had a chance to pull it out but failed.

Facing fourth and five at the Titans 28, J.P. Losman scrambled out of trouble and threw a desperation pass that was intercepted by Reynaldo Hill at the goal line. The Bills, driving into winds gusting to 20 mph, had decided against a field goal.

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