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Countdown to Kickoff: 47 Days

In seven seasons with the Titans, defensive lineman Albert Haynesworth spent an inordinate amount of time in the opponent's backfield.

The countdown to kickoff continues.

The Tennessee Titans will open the 2020 regular season Sept. 14 at Denver. That is 47 days away. So, today we look at one way the number 47 figures into the team’s recent history.

Officially, he played on the line of scrimmage.

In reality, Albert Haynesworth often played on the other side of it – in the opponent’s backfield. Over seven seasons with the Tennessee Titans the 6-foot-6, 320-pound defensive tackle recorded 47 tackles for loss.

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At his best, Haynesworth was more disruptive than anyone who has played defense for Tennessee’s during the Titans era (1999-present), except for possibly Jevon Kearse. His unusual quickness for a man his size often allowed him to beat blocks before the offensive lineman even engaged him.

Haynesworth averaged 6.7 tackles for loss per season and his single-season high was 11 (2004). On average, one out of every 5.7 tackles he made was behind the line of scrimmage.

Compare those numbers to five-time Pro Bowler Jurrell Casey, an accomplished disruptor in his own right during recent seasons. In 139 games (49 more than Haynesworth), Casey had 58 tackles for loss, an average of 6.4 per season and one for every 11.6 stops.

Additionally, Haynesworth amassed 120 quarterback pressures, an average of 17.1 per season, and 24 sacks at a position that does not traditionally figure prominently in the pass rush. His impact in that regard was so profound that he is widely credited with the fact that three members of the Titans secondary – cornerback Cortland Finnegan and safeties Michael Griffin and Chris Hope – all made their Pro Bowl debuts in 2008, when Haynesworth finished fourth in Defensive Player of the Year voting.

A record-setting free agent contract from Washington in 2009 took Haynesworth away from the Titans. But his best days were in Tennessee – or in the backfield of Tennessee’s opponents.