Tennessee Titans preseason: Another unexpected development at receiver

Tennessee Titans Marcus Johnson (Mandatory Credit: The Tennessean)
Tennessee Titans Marcus Johnson (Mandatory Credit: The Tennessean) /

As the Spring and Summer have gone on, the Tennessee Titans have gone from being rumored to have been interested in julio Jones to landing him in a trade. They’ve heard stories about how good Dez Fitzpatrick can be. They’ve seen the sudden emergence of a late-round NFL Draft choice Racey McMath. Much was expected from a suddenly well-stocked and deep wide receiver corps.

Then, Julio came down hard at practice and hasn’t been on the playing surface since. McMath and Fitzpatrick vanished during the Titans’ first preseason game, and guys that we had forgotten about, Mason Kinsey and Chester Rodgers, saw their stock rise. Now, it appears that another Titans veteran is making some noise.

Marcus Johnson’s development has turned heads at Tennessee Titans training camp.

Take a look at a few training camp 53-man roster projections, and you’re almost certain to uncover that Marcus Johnson was the owner of a name that you may not see as someone people were eyeing as a serious threat to make the team. Heck, he still may not be, but the six-foot-one, 207-pound prospect is suddenly driving the hype train that recently dropped Racey McMath and Dez Fitzpatrick off.

Titans quarterback Ryan Tannehill offered his two cents recently. Thank ESPN’s Turron Davenport for the quote:

"Marcus has made some plays. I’m really excited about what he’s done. He’s shown some big-play ability to go get the football in tight coverage and win in one-on-one situations."

Johnson shared a few thoughts of his own. Here’s what he had to say.

"Training camp has been some of the toughest times for me, but thankfully I’m healthy right now. When I’m out there, I play well. Some of the things you just can’t control… Just believing in myself. Just God, knowing what he’s blessed me with and what I’m capable of. I don’t think I’ve been fully able to display that. I’ve had some unfortunate setbacks. Bad timing with certain things. I know what I can do. That stays in my mind regardless of the circumstance."

Over the course of 34 regular-season games, Johnson is credited with nine starts. He’s hauled in 42 receptions for 679 yards, and he’s reached the end zone three times. There are other Tennessee Titans receivers that haven’t even done that.

4 Titans already tumbling down their depth chart. light. Trending

Is Johnson a longshot? He absolutely is, but nothing’s over until it’s over. Tennessee has two preseason games remaining on the 2021 slate. Johnson will have opportunities to prove himself. He’s found his way onto a few radars. The question now is can he seize his opportunity and shock a few people. It will be a nice story to tell if that happens.