Tennessee Titans fans may want to get a little bit concerned about Jack Conklin.
The Tennessee Titans had their second OTA practice open to the media today, with a few missing players.
Some players like Jonnu Smith and Jeffery Simmons were expected to miss, but for some reason Jack Conklin missing just seems unexpected.
The top-10 pick was placed on I.R. late in the season after a knee injury. I’m not sure whether that was a aggravation of the previous ACL injury or if it was a blanket term used to describe one of several injuries that landed him on I.R.
What I will say, is that I never got the sense that it was such a big injury that he was going to miss the majority of OTAs.
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Whether that was me missing something or not, I don’t know but as these OTAs go on I think Conklin should be getting more and more concerned for every snap he misses.
The most important thing in the offseason/preseason is getting healthy and staying healthy. So, if Conklin needs more time to recover that is fine and is something between he, the medical staff and the coaching staff.
However, every snap he misses is another snap that Dennis Kelly (presumably) is getting at right tackle as new OC Arthur Smith installs his “new” offense. After getting outplayed by Kelly last year, that could end up costing him a starting job in the fall.
The coaching staff has been outspoken about not putting Conklin inside at guard, but as time gets closer the projection gets easier and easier to make. First of all, he is scheduled to be a free agent after this season so they would probably like to see him on the field somewhere this season as they try to figure out his future with the team.
Secondly, we have to presume Kelly is the starter heading into training camp. Mike Vrabel is an old school coach with a players mentality, so if you have a guy who played well all last season and who has been practicing with the first team in every practice, that guy is going to start out as a starter.
Hopefully Conklin’s road to recovery is a short one and he will be on the field soon. Still, the fact remains that every day Dennis Kelly is out there he is widening the gap between he and Conklin in the competition for the starting right tackle position.