Tennessee Titans: Position battles heat up in Kansas City
By P. L. Colter
Earlier today, Les Bailey of Titan Sized discussed the Tennessee Titans’ approach to their week 3 preseason game, stating that coach Whisenhunt will forgo the annual dress rehearsal this this Friday night…in an attempt to get his dinged-up team some time to heal.
The starters will play no more than they have all preseason long.
While it may be a bummer for the fans, who wanted to see the starting units well into the third quarter, it is actually a blessing in disguise for the Titans.
Tennessee has some key position battles that still need to be sorted out, and the parties involved need those reps in Kansas City.
At running back, Bishop Sankey and David Cobb completely and utterly confused us last week with their flip flop performances. Week 1 in Atlanta, Sankey struggled to less than 20 yards on 8 carries, while Cobb looked impressive in his debut…averaging 4.8 yards on 11 carries.
Week 2 versus the Rams, it was Sankey that looked impressive, while Cobb struggled to just over 20 yards on 8 carries. The change in the offensive line could be the reason for Sankey’s turnaround, they were blowing the Rams’ defensive front off the ball Sunday night.
Look for Cobb to see early action with Mariota and the starting o’line this week. If he is able to duplicate Sankey’s success with that unit, then the Titans may have a good problem on their hands out of that position…for a change.
At wide receiver, the battle for the starting spot opposite Kendall Wright is just as murky as the first day of training camp. Week 1 in Atlanta, it was Harry Douglas with the strong performance, hauling in all three of his passes and converting a crucial 3rd and 12 early in the game. Last week it was Hakeem Nicks who showed off his wheels, turning a 4 yard hitch into a 40 yard big play.
Rookie Dorial Green-Beckham is looking better and better. He showed his big play ability in week 1 with a 32 yard reception, and showed off his short game last week with his 4/40 performance. ESPN Staff Writer Paul Kuharsky reported that DGB sprained his ankle yesterday, and is unlikely to play this week.
Justin Hunter was recently profiled in our stock-up rankings, and from everything that we’ve heard from Titans camp, he’s doing everything that he needs to do to earn playing time. Look for Douglas and Nicks to see the early action with Mariota, while Hunter plays the majority of the snaps overall. This one will come down to the wire.
At corner, one would assume that Perrish Cox and Blidi Wreh-Wilson will open the season as the starters, provided that BWW’s high ankle sprain is fully recovered. At nickel, an interesting battle between Coty Sensabaugh and Cody Riggs resumes Friday night. With Wreh-Wilson and McCourty out with injuries, both will see extensive time against the Chiefs’ starting receivers. Both can make a claim for that nickel spot.
This could be the last opportunity for these players to state their claim for a starting role this fall. So in essence, it’s a dress rehearsal for them.
Next: Tennessee Titans: Take Different Approach to Kansas City Game