- John Clayton, NFL senior writer
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Titans head coach Jeff Fisher's sales pitch to Eddie George last week was simple -- the plan for his ninth season would be no different than his first. Fisher and George agreed the Titans' running strategy would continue to be to wear down defenses by pounding George 20 to 25 times a game. George's rushing average has been 3.4 yards a carry or less the past three seasons, but many of his carries are in short-yardage situations or when the Titans are killing the clock. George has never missed a game or had fewer than 312 carries a season. Expect the same in 2004 if George agrees to replace $2 million of base salary with incentives.
Cure to a problem
Seahawks receivers Koren Robinson, Darrell Jackson and Bobby Engram have gotten the "drop" on bouncing back from the team's 41 dropped passes last season, second only to Detroit. Immediately after each drop in practice, they now drop to the ground and do pushups. They also do quick-catch drills with softballs and spend more time in front of the Jugs machine. The extra pushups and workouts inspired by drops in the April minicamp have added more muscle to Robinson.
For the past two seasons, David Boston shocked cornerbacks by coming onto the field wearing wild-colored contact lenses, making his eyes purple or red or blue. A standard eye test by the Dolphins revealed one of the league's most dangerous deep threats needed a contact correction for a depth-perception problem. The new contacts have Boston picking up balls quicker and a new diet has him on pace to play at under 230 pounds. The only mandate by the team is that Boston wear only natural-colored lenses during games.
Former Cowboys fullback Robert Thomas found a way to resurrect his career. Inspired by his girlfriend's suggestion, Thomas, who didn't get an NFL job last year, dropped 50 pounds and became a runner-linebacker for the Georgia Force of the Arena League. He made the all-rookie team and now is getting calls from NFL clubs with West Coast offenses that are looking for a fullback who showed he could catch, run and block in Arena ball.
John Clayton is a senior writer for ESPN.com.
If Eddie George returns to the Titans, he should expect for his role in the offense to remain the same.