The film doesn't lie.
Wide receiver Randy Moss was open several more times than the ball was thrown to him.
Moss was targeted just four times by the Titans in the game and had one catch for 26 yards. Most of his day was spent blocking and as a decoy on deeper routes, with the Titans hoping underneath patterns would open up in the 29-17 loss to the Miami Dolphins Sunday.
“I think there were a couple of situations where we could have gotten the ball to him. But that's always the case as you look at a game,” Titans coach Jeff Fisher said. “There's gonna be different options. Unless you stood under center and dropped back in the pocket and tried to look down the field, be careful about criticizing quarterbacks, because it's not an easy thing to do.”
Moss was allowed to stay behind in Miami, since he has a home in South Florida and will be back in time for Wednesday's practice.
Even so, he knew the game plan well enough to play a full-time role.
“Mike [Heimerdinger] didn't have any issues. Initially early in the week, we felt like we might just have a package. That in itself is gonna be a challenge for Mike, going to that package, the Randy package. But by the end of the week, he didn't need to do that,” Fisher said. “It speaks volumes for what Randy was able to learn.”
It still didn't translate into a big splash in Moss' Titans debut. After the game, Moss said he felt he could have done a better job blocking and was critical of his own performance, but expressed that he was OK with how he was used.
Fisher reiterated that on Monday.
“He was excited to play. I think he was a factor in the ballgame,” Fisher said. “He was really in tune to what they were doing. He blocked. This might have been his best blocking day ever. But he was into it and worked hard.”
The Titans hope to incorporate Moss into the passing game even more, but were pleased that he knew enough of the offense to play nearly the entire game. The only mystery was why Moss was not on the field in a desperation fourth-and-20 situation on Tennessee's final drive. Fisher explained that Moss was tired.
“Randy wasn't tired because he was out of shape. Randy was tired because he was running go routes, and deep routes down the field. … That's just what was going on. He was running a lot of deep routes,” Fisher said.