Tennessee Titans Players to Start Training Camp on the Bubble
Things change every year in the NFL. Players grow older and new players come in. For the players growing older, their experience must outweigh the physical limitations they inevitably have to face. With such a deep and talented draft class coming in, there will be many veteran players around the league out of work. Here is a list of Tennessee Titans players who may face such a situation.
Douglas is the lone veteran player in the receiving corps on the Titans. Taking a pay cut may have helped his chances, but when it comes to contributing on the field, he has been hard pressed to make anything happen. Douglas, Tajae Sharpe, Rishard Matthews, Eric Weems, and Tre McBride are currently the only receivers on the Titans roster.
This draft is deep at the receiver position, and I’m making a prediction here: the Titans will draft two or more receivers. The Titans should have no problems finding contributors all the way down into round 5.
The draft isn’t the only place to find help. There are also a few options left on the open market: Michael Floyd, Victor Cruz, Vincent Jackson, and Anquan Boldin. All of which could provide a veteran presence and more contribution on the field.
Weems is another receiver who makes this list. Now, I haven’t seen his contract details, but I’m sure the Titans left themselves a way out. Weems was signed for his versatility on special teams, not for what he can do as a receiver.
Special teams play is an important part of what Jon Robinson and Mike Mularkey want to do. But this draft will have plenty of players who can make a difference on special teams, such as John Ross, Adoree’ Jackson, and Cam Sutton.
Already on the roster is Kevin Byard as a gunner and there is only a need for one other. LeShaun Sims could fill that role, as could Cam Sutton.
McCain is another veteran player with his head close to the chopping block. Fellow cornerback and long time Titan Jason McCourty has already been released.
Even more so than the wide receiver position, the cornerback positions is also very deep in this class; with plenty of cornerbacks ready to come in and start right away, like Marshon Lattimore, Gareon Conley, Quincy Wilson, Kevin King, and Sidney Jones if it wasn’t for injury.
If you were to work your way down to the middle rounds of the draft, you would find players who would be ready to come in and contribute right away: Cameron Sutton, Rasul Douglas, Howard Wilson, Ahkello Witherspoon, and Shaquil Griffin. So, look for the Titans to possibly get an upgrade and cheaper option at the position here. Another prediction, I expect the Titans to take at least two cornerbacks in this draft as well.
Much like Harry Douglas listed above, Searcy also helped himself making the team by taking a pay cut. With the emergence of Byard and addition of Johnathan Cyprien, snaps could be hard to find for Searcy.
This draft is also loaded at safety, with two projected to go in the top ten. If the Titans elect to take one of these safeties, Searcy could be the odd man out. A look at what that situation would look like: Byard and either Jamal Adams or Malik Hooker would be the starters. Cyprien would take the role Daimion Stafford left behind and Searcy likely wouldn’t make the team.
Call me crazy if you want, but this could actually play out. Over the offseason at the NFL combine, Mularkey noted that Marcus Mariota is going into his third year and that he is getting to the point where he doesn’t need that mentor presence behind him. After three years, he’s been in the league and has had an opportunity to see all the different things he will have thrown at him multiple times.
On the first day of voluntary workouts, Brian Orakpo had a similar message to what Mularkey had to say. He noted that Mariota has been in the league for going on three years now, he is considered a veteran now and guys are going to be looking to him for leadership.
Yes, the Titans did sign Cassel to an extension, but Cassel could retire at any given point. If the Titans elect to draft a young quarterback in the mid to late rounds, they could pull a Patriots move and trade him for more value later. Players like Josh Dobbs, Chad Kelly, Trevor Knight, and Jerod Evans all offer plenty of upside. Although they all lack experience, obviously, they all should provide an upgrade on the field over Cassel.
So, there you have it. These are the guys who will start training camp behind the eight ball. Some more likely than others, but this will all boil down to what happens in the draft on April 27th.