In Losing a Mentor, Vince Young Becomes One

AP Photo

When Vince Young was an N.F.L. rookie, in 2006, he often found himself overwhelmed by high expectations. Just when things seemed to reach a breaking point, Steve McNair, Young’s mentor and childhood hero, was always there to restore calm.

“He would always say, ‘Everything’s going to be O.K.,’ ” Young recalled Thursday after the Titans’ practice. “That was his biggest thing. He’d say: ‘You’ll be fine, boy. Go back out there, and show ’em the type of good quarterback you are.’ ”

Now, after McNair’s unspeakable death in July 2009, Young has found himself saying the same reassuring words to McNair’s young sons, Tyler, 12, and Trenton, 6: “Things will be better in the...

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