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Hawkins implies adding Manning would have set Titans back

Tennessee Titans owner Bud Adams was among those who were disappointed that quarterback Peyton Manning spurned the team for the Denver Broncos. Perhaps Adams should take heart in the words of Titans receiver Lavelle Hawkins, who implied that Tennessee is better off for missing out on the four-time MVP.

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"We are good with what we have, so I wasn't too worried about it," Hawkins told The Tennessean in a report published Friday. "This year, with all of us coming back and with (quarterbacks) Matt (Hasselbeck) and Jake (Locker), we want to build off the things we did last year. I want to grow with those guys."

The veteran Hasselbeck and rookie Locker led the Titans to a 9-7 finish last season, when the team fell just shy of making the playoffs. Hasselbeck started every game, throwing for 3,571 yards and 18 touchdowns. Locker played in five games, racking up 542 passing yards and four scores without getting picked off once.

"If Peyton would've come, we would have started a lot of things over," Hawkins said. "Now we can just continue on with what we have."

Hawkins, a four-year veteran, caught 47 passes for 470 yards and one touchdown last season. The Titans kept him from hitting the free-agent market when they signed him to a multi-year deal in February.

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