Now that the Tennessee Titans' improbable playoff dreams are finished for this season, it's back to reality with goals quickly set on two other historic marks:
• Finish 8-8, and the Titans will be the first NFL team to climb to .500 after losing its first six games.
• Help running back Chris Johnson rush for 128 yards next Sunday at Seattle against the Seahawks, making him the sixth NFL player to rush for 2,000 yards in a season.
That’s all that’s left for Tennessee (7-8) after a 42-17 loss to San Diego on Christmas night in Nashville, Tenn.
“You go to 8-8,” Titans cornerback Cortland Finnegan said. “You win the next football game, and you get Chris Johnson 2,000 yards rushing.”
Johnson has 1,872 yards after he ran for 142 yards against San Diego. That was his 10th straight 100-yard rushing game, giving him the third-longest streak behind Barry Sanders (14 in 1997) and Marcus Allen (11 in 1985-86). Jamal Lewis was the last to run for 2,000 yards, in 2003.
“That record would mean a lot to me,” Johnson said.
“Everyone is committed to doing everything they can to help CJ get 2,000, and he deserves it,” tight end Bo Scaife said.
Johnson, a second-year running back from East Carolina, isn’t giving up on Eric Dickerson’s single-season rushing record of 2,105 yards. He would need 233 yards against the Seahawks to tie the mark Dickerson set in 1984. That would top his career high of 228 yards set Nov. 1 against Jacksonville.
Impostor suspected in scam
Police say a man wanted for cyberstalking may be the same person pretending to be Carolina Panthers left tackle Travelle Wharton.
A misdemeanor cyberstalking warrant has been issued for Christon Brewer.
The Panthers announced last week that a Wharton impostor defrauded a handful of people out of about $25,000 in bogus investment scams over the past year.
Charlotte-Mecklenburg police Sgt. Walter Bowling said Saturday that Brewer used an alias of Travelle Wharton and is a “person of interest” relating to the investigation of the impersonation of a Panthers player.
No arrests have been made.
Browns beat blackout
The Cleveland Browns’ game against the Oakland Raiders today will be televised locally.
The Browns announced Saturday that the team had averted a local blackout within a 75-mile radius. The Browns haven’t had a blackout since the final game of 1995, the team’s last before former owner Art Modell moved his franchise to Baltimore.
Kansas City placed safety DaJuan Morgan and linebacker Justin Rogers on injured reserve. … Buffalo slot receiver Josh Reed will not play today at Atlanta. He didn’t travel with the team because of an ankle injury. … Chicago receiver Devin Hester is questionable to return Monday against the Minnesota Vikings after missing two games with a strained left calf.