Jan 1, 2012; Houston, TX, USA; Tennessee Titans wide receiver Lavelle Hawkins (87) runs after a catch against the Houston Texans in the second quarter at Reliant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports
It wasn’t a matter of whether Tennessee Titans wide receiver Lavelle Hawkins was going to get released—it was a matter of “when.”
That day came on May 1, 2013. According to Jim Wyatt from The Tennessean, the Titans will release Hawkins. Hawkins was scheduled to make $1.9 million during the 2013-14 NFL season. For a player who finished this past season with five receptions for 62 yards, that wasn’t likely. It became even more unlikely when Justin Hunter was selected with the No. 34 pick in the 2013 NFL Draft.
Don’t expect any grudges from Hawkins. He understood why the Titans released him. He claimed:
“Hey, I was due to make ($1.9) million. And for a guy who caught five balls last year, that’s unheard of. I totally understand.”
The Titans still have five receivers who would’ve certainly been given a greater chance at playing time. Kenny Britt, Kendall Wright, Nate Washington, Damian Williams and Hunter were all higher on the depth chart. That doesn’t include Marc Mariani, Kevin Walter and Michael Preston. All three of these players will compete for a roster spot in training camp.
Earlier this offseason, there were rumors about the Titans putting Washington on the trade block. According to Cory Curtis from WKRN, the Titans could save more than $4 million if they parted ways with Washington. That would help the team sign all of their rookies and possibly add more depth with either OT Eric Winston or DE Israel Idonije.
Keeping Washington still makes sense. Although he has had just one season with more than 47 catches, Washington hasn’t missed a regular-season game since before 2006. That kind of durability and experience would help a team who has two of their top receivers—Britt and Hunter—both coming off severe knee injuries from 2011.
Should the Titans have parted ways with Washington instead of Hawkins? Will Hawkins latch on somewhere else? If he does, will he make that team’s 53-man roster?