The Tennessee Titans made a lot of moves in the offseason and are currently NFL football odds dark horses to win the AFC South. Since the team starts its preseason this week, we decided to take a look at some of the things fans should expect from the Titans this season.
For the first preseason game, the Titans will start Quinton Spain at the left guard position. The team might decide to move someone else to the position and give Spain some time to learn the position, but it seems like the coaches have chosen to go with Spain as the starter because they don’t seem too impressed with their backups.
Derrick Henry will be better than most people think, and showed why the team was eager to draft him during practice when he knocked linebacker Nate Palmer, who appeared poised to deliver a big hit, to the ground. Henry’s size and speed will give the team a change of pace runner that will compliment DeMarco Murray.
The Titans have too many tight ends on their roster and have some tough choices to make before the start of the season. Delanie Walker, Anthony Fasano, and Craig Stevens will most likely be on the opening day roster, but it is unclear if the team intends to keep four or five tight ends on their final roster. Phillip Supernaw has the potential to be a solid contributor, but he needs to be more disciplined after getting six penalties in his limited appearances last year. The team cannot afford to keep him around if they feel his decision making is questionable.
Because of the height advantage, he will have over defenders, Dorial Green-Beckham will likely be a favorite red-zone fade target for Marcus Mariota.
DeMarco Murray and Andre Johnson won’t see a lot of playing time during the preseason. Murray, who was acquired in a trade with the Philadelphia Eagles after a disappointing season, is looking to bounce back and prove last season was a fluke, and will try to lobby for some playing time. However, head coach Mike Mularkey said he will try to limit Murray’s snaps during the preseason. Mularkey said Johnson will see even less time than Murray because he has already seen what the receiver can do over the course of his career.
Steve Hutchinson, who finished his career with the Titans after playing for the Minnesota Vikings and Seattle Seahawks, is working with the Titans during training camp as a part of the pro scouting department. After training camp is over, the Hutchinson and the Titans will get together to decide if he wants to be part of the staff on a full-time basis.
Bishop Sankey, who was the first running back taken in the 2014 draft has a lot of work to do if he wants to make the final roster. With Henry and Murray on the team, it will be hard for him to get some playing time when the season starts, which is why Coach Mularkey said he would give Sankey some extra reps against the San Diego Chargers in their first preseason game.
Marcus Mariota worked with five different receivers against no defense this week. He missed Green-Beckham from 10 yards away and took responsibility for the error. By admitting the mistake was his fault, Mariota showed his teammates he isn’t the type of player that will try to deflect the blame on others when things aren’t going well for the team, which is what good leaders are supposed to do.