NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Tennessee receiver Kenny Britt has a torn ACL in his right knee and will need season-ending surgery.
"Unfortunately like we had hoped it wasn't, he tore his ACL and his MCL so he will be out for the season, which is very unfortunate for him and obviously for him," Titans coach Mike Munchak said Monday. "He was off to a great start this year. As we all know, he's a special player. He's got a lot of work ahead of him. But he's young. We know that he'll be back next year."
The news couldn't come at a worse time for the Titans (2-1) who are tied with Houston atop the AFC South with a two-game winning streak. The injury leaves Tennessee with four receivers, and team officials already are looking for someone to fill the spot on the roster. Munchak said they will be working out receivers Tuesday and should have a player added by Wednesday.
Replacing Britt will not be easy.
The first-round pick out of Rutgers in 2009 was off to the best start of his career with his 289 yards receiving ranked fifth in the NFL even though his knee buckled underneath him in the second quarter of Sunday's 17-14 win over Denver.
Matt Hasselbeck called it horrible news for Britt. The quarterback said everyone feels bad for someone who has worked so hard and was enjoying a tremendous start to the season.
"Personally from the day I got here, he was one of the guys that I really tried to invest a lot of my time and energy into," Hasselbeck said. "He's probably the most talented player on this team at any position. He could be really special. I think he's showed glimpses of that, and he was really on fire and off to a great start. So for me, all that work all that investment is going to have to wait."
The Titans kept only five receivers on the roster in the final cuts, and Marc Mariani didn't catch a pass in a game last season as a rookie when he was a Pro Bowl returner. Nate Washington is tied for third in the NFL with 21 receptions and 12th with 258 yards passing. The other three receivers came into this season with a combined 35 career catches.
Tennessee currently is seventh in the NFL, averaging 310.7 yards passing per game with Hasselbeck off to the best start of his career in his 13th season. He has thrown for 932 yards so far, and only Warren Moon has started with more yards passing with this franchise.