Collins and Young Spar For The Start In Tenessee

Andrea NejmanContributor IJune 3, 2009

NASHVILLE, TN - JANUARY 10:  Quarterback Kerry Collins #5 of the Tennessee Titans looks to throw the ball against the Baltimore Ravens during the AFC Divisional Playoff Game on January 10, 2009 at LP Field in Nashville, Tennessee.  (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

Quarterback sparring is dangerous, and the Titans are falling into the trap. This is the positional battle to watch for in Tennessee in the coming months. 

Vince Young's agent is back-pedaling on previous comments that Young made in Baltimore, saying that he would be willing to be traded, and now is willing to stay and battle it out this summer.

After a knee injury, the former rookie of the year was benched for 38-year-old veteran and ex-Giant Kerry Collins, who carried the team to its 13-3 record and Division Championship, before losing to Baltimore in the playoffs. Interestingly enough, it was in Baltimore that Young said that he wanted out.

Jeff Fisher will now have his hands full, with two quarterbacks rearing to go, one of which he has reportedly already promised a starting position to (Collins, back in February), and rumors flying about the other's talent. After all, Vince Young beat out Reggie Bush for Rookie of the Year, and is one of the only rookies to be voted into the Probowl.  

But why would Collins feel edged out? The team was 10-0 in the beginning of last season. What coach would rightfully replace him? Young, in the first game of last year against Jacksonville, had thrown one touchdown pass to rookie Chris Johnson, and thrown two interceptions before his knee injury. 

Vince Young has said that this is all up to “the boss.”  Now, it all rests on training camp, if Young even makes it that far. After all, teams like the Bucs and the Vikings are in need of a marquis quarterback, and have been for years.  The problem is that Young and Collins play two different games with the same obstacles. The number one obstacle? Receiving. 

The 2008 Titans were 28th in receiving. 
A positional battle between quarterbacks, in both the media and on the field, is a bad omen for a good team. The talented, yet erratic, Justin Gage is back to receive this year.   The University of Missouri player left the Bears to lead the Titans in receiving yards, and had a career high number of touchdowns (six). Bo Scaife emerged as a reliable receiver as well. 

Then you have Lavelle Hawkins, who totaled only seven receptions, and Chris Davis, who had only ONE catch last season against the Colts. That might fly for a rookie, but that was Davis' third season. Speaking of rookies, the Titans gained 6th round draft pick Dominique Edison, and 1st round pick Rutgers player Kenny Britt as wide receivers. Both seem promising as college players. Maybe they'll prove themselves as rookies, just like Vince Young. Or maybe the NFL will be too much pressure, and Gage will end up carrying the team. The Titans failed to get their big-time receiver in the draft, meaning they need a skillful quarterback more than ever.

Either way, it's clear that the Tennesee Titans cannot rely on passing. They need a quarterback who can run. Vince Young is undoubtedly quicker, and will tuck the ball and run. Collins is less likely to, but it can also be argued that Collins is a better decision maker because of his experience with the game. 

This is the team's 50th season, and they will play the Bills on Aug. 8th. That's just a few short months away. Trent Edwards will be ready, and the bloodbath better be over by then. The two players can't be injured, or disgruntled, or discouraged.

Good luck, Jeff.