Chargers sit DE Cesaire vs. Titans; Hardwick starts at center

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The San Diego Chargers are sitting defensive end Jacques Cesaire against the Tennessee Titans because of an injured elbow. However, center Nick Hardwick will be making his first start since hurting his left ankle in the season opener.

The timing of Hardwick's return is perfect for the Chargers. Fellow center Scott Mruczkowski hurt his right ankle in last week's 27-24 win over Cincinnati. Hardwick had surgery on his ankle and practiced throughout the week.

Cesaire had started the last 13 games for the Chargers, but he was injured against Cincinnati.

The Chargers also deactivated linebacker Kevin Burnett and running back Michael Bennett.

The Titans deactivated linebacker Keith Bulluck, who tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee last week. Defensive end Jevon Kearse was also kept out of the lineup, but he is healthy.

Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press

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