Cornerback Nick Harper sat out a second consecutive day with a shoulder problem on Wednesday as Rod Hood took the first-team reps for the Tennessee Titans as they ready for the Christmas night game against the San Diego Chargers.
Hood, signed as a street free agent in October, made a splash when the Titans first signed him, getting three interceptions in three starts while Harper was out with a broken forearm, but has been idle in recent weeks. Hood said news of his working with the starting defense on Wednesday was a bit of a surprise.
“They came to me and told me I was going to practice. I had no idea,” Hood said. “I thought I was going to continue to do scout team reps, because I haven’t practiced other than doing scout team. I did scout team [Tuesday], walk-through for scout team.”
Hood said he has tried his best to stay ready, even though he not played since returning an interception 31 yards for a score against Buffalo. He said he has no idea how things will turn out for him Christmas night against the Chargers.
“It’s still up in the air right now. I have no clue,” Hood said. “I try to stay as ready as possible, but I’d be lying to you if said it’s not been tough, going for five weeks and not putting any pads on.”
Asked if he would be active after filling in for an ailing Harper, who watched Wednesday’s work, Hood said, “I hope so. I’ve been out for five weeks and haven’t had an opportunity to get on the field. But I’m looking forward to the opportunity now.”
Titans coach Jeff Fisher downplayed Harper’s injuries, adding that the cornerback has had foot and arm issues as well.
“Nick is always able to answer the bell, so I’m not concerned about him,” Fisher said. “Rod is fine. He’s preparing himself. He’s a pro and he knows what we’re doing.He’s done that thus far.”
In regards to other injuries, defensive tackle Tony Brown (knee/quadriceps) and defensive end Kyle Vanden Bosch (neck stinger) did not practice.
Brown, who did not practice last week and did not finish against Miami Sunday, said he plans to play, no matter what.
“I’ll be out there if it falls out. This will be one where they’ll have to pull me out. I’m planning on going,” Brown said.
Tight end Craig Stevens (concussion) practiced fully, while Nate Washington (ankle) was limited. Troy Kropog suffered a calf injury during practice and did not finish on Wednesday.