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Hall Steps Up, Shuts Down Titans' Moss


Curious game plan by the Tennessee Titans.

Randy Moss is thought to be a Hall of Fame-caliber receiver, yet the Titans targeted him just three times in Sunday's game against the Redskins.

Maybe DeAngelo Hall had something to do with that.

Hall lined up against Moss most of the game and held him without a catch as the Redskins won 19-16 in overtime.

"All week, we were talking about different things they were going to do," Hall said after the game. "We felt like they were going to take a lot more shots. It wasn't like they threw the ball to [Moss] 15 times and he had zero catches. They might have thrown it (to him) three or four times."

Said head coach Mike Shanahan: "DeAngelo Hall, he's obviously very competitive. He has some great skills, and I was really pleased with his effort. We had a guy slicing to him every once in a while to keep Tennessee honest, but he is a very talented guy."

Late in the third quarter, Moss nearly turned in a game-changing play, except he sabotaged his own efforts.

On a key 4th-and-3 play at Washington's 36-yard line, Moss ran a deep sideline route. He caught the pass in the end zone from quarterback Rusty Smith, but he clearly pushed off Hall.

The touchdown was nullified, and the Titans were forced to punt.

Hall, who finished the game with two tackles and two passes defended, said he was surprised the Titans' game plan did not focus more on Moss.

He was also surprised that the Titans occasionally went away from giving the ball to running back Chris Johnson, even though Johnson finished with 130 rushing yards on 21 carries.

"When you have a running back like Chris Johnson and you have a receiver like Randy Moss, you feel like you can't double Randy Moss all the time because Chris Johnson will go off," Hall said. "You can't put eight in the box because Randy's going to get off. For [the Titans] to really not utilize them like we anticipated, it was a little bit of a wrinkle that we didn't expect.

"But at the same time, I guess they ran what they felt they were comfortable with."

Hall nearly added to his interception total, almost picking off Smith on two occasions in the second half.

He ranks second in the NFL with six interceptions, trailing the Philadelphia Eagles' Asante Samuel who has seven picks after Sunday night's game.

Apart from his individual performance, Hall said Sunday's win was an important one for the team.

"I think this one might be more so if you look at it because the record is what it is. You go with either a losing record or a .500 football team," Hall said. "For us right now, .500 kind of still has you in the thick of things. It's a little bit of a turning point to see guys keep fighting and keep fighting.

"The win is obviously what we wanted, but just to see guys keep fighting like that and the outcome, to get a win on top of that, is kind of icing on the cake."

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