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Latest concussion had Titans' Ball considering retirement

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Tennessee Titans defensive end Dave Ball says he briefly considered retirement after his latest concussion two weeks ago against Cincinnati.

Ball returned to practice Friday but won't play against the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday because of his third concussion the past two seasons. His season ended after 11 games last year due to a concussion.

"I thought of that," he said of retiring. "But I'm not at that point yet. It would take a couple of more hard knocks before they can knock D. Ball out of there, right?"

Ball said he is improving, and both he and the Titans expect he should be on track to play Nov. 27 against Tampa Bay.

"He's had a history of it, but we're being safe about it, and it seems like by next week, he should be available," Titans coach Mike Munchak said of Ball.

The defensive end said he consulted with doctors and advice he received from Dr. Gary Solomon at Vanderbilt convinced him that he would be fine to return.

Linebacker Colin McCarthy missed a second straight day with a knee problem and will be evaluated Saturday to see if he can play Sunday. He is listed as questionable along with linebackers Gerald McRath (hamstring) and Barrett Ruud (groin), who both practiced Friday. Receiver Nate Washington was added to the injury report with an illness and is probable.

Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press

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